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3 Reasons Why Toyota Prius Is The Best Cheap Car To Own

The Toyota Prius is easily the best car to own. Here are my top three reasons why.


The Toyota Prius is seriously one of the best and most affordable cars you can own. As a car guy myself, this comes as no surprise. While I may have a lot more knowledge of the car than most, the truth remains.

Here are my three reasons why the Toyota Prius is the best cheap car to own.

Reason 1: Even With High Miles They Run Well
I recently went to California and picked up a used 2007 Prius. It was beaten. The 12v battery was toast. The dash lights went out, the cat converter was stolen, and it was filthy.

toyota prius catalytic conveter

The great thing about getting the car though is it was super cheap. After purchasing, I had to fix all those things as listed above. The kicker is this. I flew down to California with a one-way ticket. I had to drive this car back home 900 miles away.

The Prius performed like a boss. No issues and 44 miles per gallon, made the 12-hour trip seem like a breeze. I had also never seen the car before. Ever. Not once driven it until I saw it the day before I drove it home. This Prius had 200,000 miles on it and still got me back in comfort and for cheap.

Total cost invested in this car so far is $1000, and I can still sell it for about $3000. High miles dirty and needing some love is not an issue. Prius will perform like a total champ when required, and do it all while keeping your pocketbook from catching fire.

Reason 2: Low Maintenance Cost
Prius is a super cheap ride to own. I can change all the fluids, including coolant, trans fluid, engine oil, and brake fluid, for about $100 or less. The best part about that is, I need to change only 3 of those about every 90k. The engine oil, while needing a more frequent change, can be done for less than 30 dollars with good quality engine oil and filter.

toyota prius engine oil filter

Furthermore, the amount of fluids needed to drain and fill all systems is pretty minimal. Prius needs 3.75 quarts of engine oil, 4 quarts trans fluid, 2 pints of the brake, and 2 gallons of coolant. For one car that only needs to have these services done (other than engine oil) every 90k, this is a total win.

Low maintenance has always been a Prius MO. The car has been our future we are now living.

Reason 3: Easy On The Fuel
I drove 900 miles. I filled up the car twice and for less than $30 each time. That means driving cost over 200 dollars less than my flight down to pick the car up. That is awesome.

Toyota prius super mileage

My Prius keeps on humming along. It consistently will get over 40 miles per gallon, and that translates into significant savings.

I love every Prius I have owned, which now is 5. They are great cars and always give me a great story to write. If you have a great story about your Prius and what it has done for you, drop me a line on Twitter, I would like to hear from you.

Thank you for reading, and I will see you in the next story. Is Your Toyota Prius Part Of The Massive Fuel Pump Recall? Check here to find out.

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Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter is also an Instructor of Automotive Technology at Columbia Basin College. Peter can be reached on Linkedin and you can tweet him at The_hybrid_guy on Twitter. Find his page on Facebook at Certified Auto Consulting. Read more of Peter's stories at Toyota news coverage on Torque News. Search Toyota Prius Torque News for more in depth Prius coverage from our reporters.


Kelly (not verified)    March 3, 2020 - 8:53PM

Re Prius headlamps --

The first time one flickers, replace both bulbs. This saves wear and tear on the (hideously expensive) ballast. Your dealer will show that it takes many hours and will want $600 to replace the bulbs. I found instructions on YouTube and did both in under an hour. Original equipment (Sylvania) lamps were under $200 a pair online did it three years ago and my 2008 is just fine

Irina (not verified)    October 24, 2021 - 3:24AM

I m very skeptical about Prius now. Bought 2010, drove 35 k miles until head gasket blew and the engine is done. Changed oil religiously, head gasket is a common problem of gen 3 Prius, mine blew most likely because egr was clogged earlier. Mechanic cleaned it-but it failed anyways. To change engine 5000-7000$. I wouldn’t plan on driving past 220 k miles. Mechanic says most Prius cars he changes engines on are around 220 k miles, they can last longer but you gotta make sure you know the history of the car and if it was taken care of. And avoid the years they have most problems. Also if you pay mechanic to change oil-it’s not cheap. It had to be fully synthetic and in Cali it’s 100$ to change it.