My 2001 prius that has served me well for the last three years has gotten to the point where I feel I should replace it instead of continuing to pour money into it (HV battery and who knows what else are going, at nearly 300k miles). I really like the size and fuel efficiency of it.
My usual driving habits are a daily 5 or so mile (one way) city commute, 60-ish miles (round trip) freeway a few times a month, and a 800 mile (round trip) trek across the state about once a month. In spite of this being my usual habits, I’ve somehow managed to put 90,000 miles on the thing in the last three years with whatever extra unusual driving I’ve done, such as 8 months where I had a 40 mile (one way) commute, and a handful of extra long drives (southwest michigan to boston, southwest michigan to st. louis).
I drove a rental 2012 civic last weekend and I wasn’t a fan of it. Decent highway gas mileage, but the turning radius was disappointing, and I kept hitting my knees on the steering column, among other things.
I test drove a gen 3 prius (trim level 2) and a prius C (trim level 3) recently.
The gen 3 feels a whole lot bigger than it really is. Nice interior, comfortable seats, lots of cargo room, but the giant center console struck me as really weird, and it was really gadget-y coming from the Gen 1. The ride was smooth and quiet, but I didn’t like how “floaty” the drive felt, and the way that it just doesn’t want to accelerate until I really pressed the gas petal down was really weird. Also, it never really felt like it was going as fast as I was.
The C felt like it was just the right size, and it seemed like it doesn’t have that much less cargo capacity than the Gen 1 I’m replacing. The seats were stiff, but comfortable, and the layout of the dashboard made more sense than the Gen 3, but it was still weird coming from the much simpler Gen 1. The C had a lot more road noise, but the ride was still a lot nicer than consumer reports and various car magazines led me to believe, and the acceleration seemed to be about the same as the Gen 1, so no problems there for me.
Any suggestions for other cars I should look at in the new/recently used compact/sub-compact space, non-hybrid or hybrid?