I have a short but fairly steep hill down to town. Which is better to use : set the cruise control and not have to brake going down OR use “B” driving position? it feels like "B: is using the brakes.
Cruise control is meant to be use on the highway,not in town.
I often use cruise control to make sure I don’t accidentally go over the speed limit in urban speed zones, especially in those municipalities that have 25 mph speed limits on major through roads that go on for miles with cops just waiting for you to go over that speed limit.
It’s not just for highways.
Look in the manual and it will explain just what ‘B’ does as far as engine braking.
I don’t think it’s engine braking but regeneration braking, the motors becoming generators to recharge the battery. The engine itself might not even be running.
Having driven a Prius since 2003, I would probably use braking mode, but only if the hill were really steep and under wet or icy conditions. Otherwise I’d just coast down the hill and use the brakes as needed. Remember that the regenerative braking system stores energy that can be used to run the car in electric mode.
Does car go faster than speed limit while decending hill? Using the B lever engages regen braking. Touching brake pedal lightly does same. Pushing brake pedal hard uses mechanical brakes.
Does touching the B lever give you regeneration braking without disengaging the cruise control?
If touching the brake pedal lightly also gives you regeneration braking, that would be the only reason I can think of for the existence of the B lever.
Personally, I would not use cruise control in any kind of urban, town, or strip-mall suburban situations.
Cruise Control, besides keeping you at, or below, the speed limit, will also keep you UP or near the set speed, which can be far too fast for quickly-changing conditions! I also think you might spend so much time braking and then resetting the CC that you might just as well drive without CC, being careful to keep to the limit.
Less distractions, more focus on all the surroundings/occurences. I only use CC on limited-access roads (Interstates, turnpikes, freeways…) that are not within or even near cities, but the long stretches between cities.
In those New Mexico villages where I use cruise control to obey speed limits, I usually AM the traffic.