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Toyota Prius Quicker Than Fiat 124 Spider, BMW X1 In Figure 8 Test

A respectable enthusiast magazine discovers that the Prius is quicker than it may seem.


Toyota Prius owners endure their fair share of ribbing for driving such a "low-performance" vehicle. But is the Prius really out of the mainstream for performance? Not by a long shot. Motor Trend is just the latest to prove what many Prius owners already know - the car is just like any other normal car. Particularly on a twisty figure 8 race track.

Related Story - Which Is Quickest? Toyota Prius vs. Chevy Colorado Duramax, vs. Subaru Crosstrek

Motor Trend uses a figure 8 in order to sort the wheat from the chaff. as Motor Tren puts it, "Sometimes called a "race rack in a bottle," it's the best way to objectively measure how different cars accelerate, brake, and corner on their limits in a tidy, repeatable way." Typically, cars with sticky tires, a low center of gravity, big brakes and a powerful engine do best on this course. The Prius has exactly none of those things. So why did it just beat a Jaguar, a Mercedes, a BMW, and a bunch of other cars that have "sport" and "GT" in their name?

The Prius recorded a time of 26.3 seconds. Lower is better for those multi-tasking while looking at our story. Here are the scores of some pretty respectable cars few call slow, all of which the Prius spanked:
- Fiat 124 Spider - 26.4 seconds
- Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - 26.4 seconds
- Mercedes-AMG GLE 43 - 26.4 seconds
- Mazda6 2.5T - 26.7 seconds
- BMW X2 SDRIVE 28I - 26.7 seconds
- Nissan Sentra Nismo - 26.7 seconds
- Kia Soul GT Line - 26.8 seconds
- Land Rover Range Rover Velar P250 SE R-DYNAMIC - 26.9 seconds
- Genesis G8- Sport - 27.5 seconds

So, just to recap, the Prius spanks a whole long list of brands that pride themselves on making sporty, great handling cars and crossovers. Like the "Ultimate Driving Machine." And the specially tuned AMG and Nismo models. And the up-powered turbos from Mazda and Kia. All losers in this race. WIth a 121 hp Prius.

Related Story: The Other Cars Toyota Prius Owners Drive May Surprise You, Sorry if it Ruins Your Stereotyping

Note that my friend Collin Woodard's story is not dated April 1st, so we will assume his work is not a joke and is completely serious. Just like the Prius when it is beating the pants off "sporty" vehicles.

2019 Toyota Prius Fast Facts:
The 2019 Prius is now available with all-wheel drive. A multi-year IIHS Top Safety Pick, the Prius is one of the safest green cars in America. Oh, and it gets a 52 MPG rating and has a lower cost per mile for energy than many battery-electric vehicles.


Michael Brenner (not verified)    March 29, 2019 - 5:26PM

I used to drive a Prius at work. I own a 124 Spider. This test was either rigged or the driver's were on drugs. I don't believe it for a second.

Rex Rutland (not verified)    March 29, 2019 - 8:42PM

I don’t know who was driving the other cars was but there is no way on Earth a Prius would beat those cars above if they were driven properly. The Prius is a barge