2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid Set at 95 MPGe

By · February 01, 2012

2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in

According to Toyota Division Group vice-president, Bob Carter, the 2012 Prius Plug-in returns 95 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) in electric-only mode and 50 miles per gallon in hybrid mode.

Toyota will reportedly update its fuel economy figures for the 2012 Prius Plug-in Hybrid ahead of the vehicle's March 2012 launch.

According to Toyota Division Group vice-president, Bob Carter, the 2012 Prius Plug-in returns 95 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) in electric-only mode and 50 miles per gallon in hybrid mode. That's a decent bump over Toyota's previously announced numbers of 49 MPGe in electric-only mode and 49 MPG in hybrid mode. The revised figures were announced by Carter at a Toyota Prius C launch event.

At 95 MPGe, the 2012 Prius Plug-in essentially matches the rating of the 2012 Chevy Volt. For the 2012 model year, the EPA revised the Volt's fuel economy ratings, increasing its electric mode rating from 93 to 94 MPGe.

The 2012 Prius Plug-in Hybrid offers 15 miles of electric-only range at speeds of up to 62 miles per hour. Due to its Electric Advanced Technology Partial Zero-Emissions Vehicle (eAT-PZEV) status, the Prius Plug-in qualifies for California's carpool lane access—a perk now granted to the 2012 Chevy Volt as well.

The nearly identical efficiency rating of the Prius Plug-in and Volt will inevitably lead to comparisons between the two leading plug-in hybrids—despite the vehicles' divergent technology approaches, style, passenger and cargo space, and driving feel.

The most striking difference between the Volt and Prius Plug-in Hybrid is the sticker price. Starting at $32,760, Toyota’s Prius Plug-in Hybrid is significantly less expensive than the $39,995 Chevy Volt. However, the Volt qualifies for the full $7,500 federal tax credit, while the Prius Plug-in is only eligible for $2,500. The difference between these tax incentive brings the final purchase price nearly to parity.


· goldenfooler (not verified) · 6 years ago

What would be the cost difference on gas over say 300 miles on one trip?
What are the base model trim differences ?

· · 6 years ago

"The difference between these tax incentive brings the final purchase price nearly to parity."

Not necessarily. The Prius Plugin comes standard with navigation - the Volt does not.

· Chris C. (not verified) · 6 years ago

"The most striking difference between the Volt and Prius Plug-in Hybrid is the sticker price. "

Not for me. The most striking difference is what happens when you press your right foot on the accelerator. I am frankly amazed every time I see someone compare the Prius (any Prius) and the Volt. Compared to the Volt, the Prius is pure drudgery to drive. Different car, different buyers. Many of the early Volt buyers were indeed former Prius drivers, but many like me were coming from luxury sports sedans, BMW and Audi and the like.

Next time you are in a Volt, put it into Sport mode and go have some fun, and afterwards go ahead and TRY to tell me it's comparable to a Prius. Ha!

Compare the SIZE OF THE ELECTRIC MOTOR in the two cars. THAT is what will differentiate the driving behavior of all of these electric cars coming to market, and is why the Ford Fusion Electric (Energi) coming out later this year looks very interesting ...

· Londo Bell (not verified) · 6 years ago

@ Chris C.,

Price difference may not be for you, and that's PROBABLY the most important thing to consumers out there.

A car that doesn't sell will be a car that won't be selling. Who cares about all the fun and whatnot if the vehicle is not available for sell? Hint hint: Volt sales #.

Besides, the "many" coming from luxury sports sedans aren't really that many, per se. Definitely less than 6000 so far.

· · 6 years ago

@Chris C,
I agree, the Fusion Energi is looking interesting if a plug-in HEV is the market you are looking at. They already announced that it will top 100 MPGe although they have not given the electric only range. They have also not given the charge sustain mpg but the non-plug in version is supposed to be around 47/44 city/hw. These are impressive numbers compared to the Pius considering it is a heavier vehicle.

· · 6 years ago

@regman "...although they have not given the electric only range."

The range is about 20 miles. It is not in the presser - but are in other material.


My guess is the plugin will be similar to 47/44 - may be 46/43.

· · 6 years ago

I forgot about this video where they (someone from Ford) stated the approximate range. What we don't know is if this range is the raw or label range. For example, Nissan states 100 miles range but the label is 73. GM states 40 for the Volt but the official label is 35. I have stated before that although many complain about how the label numbers are generated and how they don't represent real life (or at least any individuals perception of real life), it is the best way to compare vehicles since these numbers are determined the same way for every vehicle.

My guess for the Fusion Energi CS mpg also was around the non-plug in mpg but probably a notch or 2 lower due to heavier batteries.

· hxp417 (not verified) · 6 years ago

Could somebody educate me what miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) is?

How do they calculate this number?

· · 6 years ago

@hxp417, Wikipedia has a pretty good explanation of the meaning and calculation of MPGe:

It isn't all that meaningful for pure EVs but it does allow comparison of the efficiency of one EV to another.

· · 6 years ago

If the numbers that EVNow lists above for the Energi are correct, and I think they probably are, then the Energi seems like a step backwards to me compared to the Volt.

The Energi would be better than the Plug-in Prius. And it would be more practical than the Volt for families or anyone who needs a bit more cargo room. I like the internal vehicle geometry quite a lot. And we haven't seen the price tag yet, which is an important factor.

But I would be much more happier with keeping the battery range above most people's daily usage rather than just using the battery to improve mpg. Not that improving mpg is bad. It is just that if someone is using a plug-in hybrid as an EV almost every day and the engine is only used for occasional long trips then plug-in hybrids are just a bridge to a better battery technology future. A concession that battery technology can't yet handle everyone's driving needs quite yet, but we are getting there. If we use them to improve mpg on a gas fired car we may be heading down a path where it takes us longer to get rid of oil altogether.

· · 6 years ago


There are consequences for going the Volt way or the PIP way. Ford has consciously chosen the "power split" way of designing PHEVs. Theoretically that lets them use smaller batteries and thus better pricing. Our tax credit structure that increases with battery size, somewhat negates that strategy.

I'm for - all kinds of plugins - let the market sort out as to which ones people lke. Infact I think there will be a market for each of these vehicles.

The real problem is with pricing. PIP is priced too high - so is Volt. FFE is priced high too. We will have to see where the Energi pricing comes in at. Potentially Ford has high volume PHEVs on hand - if they price them aggressively.

· · 6 years ago

I am all for every kind of plug-in and I am all for improving mpg through every means.

It is just that I am not looking at plug-in vehicles as a near term solution. I am looking at the long term goal of getting rid of our oil dependance and all that comes with that. I am more interested in where we end up in 10 or 20 years and beyond then how much we cut back in oil and its issues in the next 1 or 2 years.

I am not the least bit concerned, for instance, if coal is used to power the grid right this moment, because I know that by the time EVs become dominant there will be very little coal going into the grid, if any. That trend is already in place.

The more plug-in hybrids are EV in operational nature, the closer we get to EV components being produced at high volume so that the price can come down and the more we mature the overall EV technology. All the plug-ins help with this to a certain extent, but the more EV like they are the more they help.

And certainly cost is a big factor that sometimes drives us to the Prius Plug-in end of the spectrum. People do have to be able to afford to buy the cars. But as the volume of produced battery capacity increases and as battery tech improves, cost will become less of an issue because the batteries will be cheaper. This means that the more battery capacity that is made and sold the more that can be made and sold due to the lower price.

I also agree with you that if Ford prices the Energi aggressively that it will sell well. We will have to wait and see what they do.

· Londo Bell (not verified) · 6 years ago

OT here, but I think that the Nissan EV200 (van) is the black stallion here, if Nissan would like to us (EV adopters)!

A cheap van to begin with - $18K or so. with 7, not 5 only, seating arrangement.
Add a larger battery (~200 mi range) and blah blah blah blah (nothing much really) - let's make that another $10K.

A $28-30K 7 seat EV minivan? Eat that, Prius V :)

· · 6 years ago

I just don't see the point of the plug-in Prius. The range is so low, it's hardly worth the bother to plug-in. It's electric mode speed is too crippled for the freeway. Plus it costs a fortune. The Volt is expensive, too, but at least the Volt has some range, and it will go all the way to 100 mph on the battery.

· · 6 years ago

@Michael "I just don't see the point of the plug-in Prius. The range is so low, it's hardly worth the bother to plug-in. "

Well, it depends on your commute. If it is within 15 miles (like mine is) - then you can save a ton of gas. That is not something you can do by just somehow increasing the efficiency of ICE.

· · 6 years ago

@alt-e "I am more interested in where we end up in 10 or 20 years and beyond then how much we cut back in oil and its issues in the next 1 or 2 years."

I think the long term will depend a lot on where the battery tech is - and where the oil production is. I don't see much of a part for power-split PHEVs in 10 to 20 years. It is only in this decade that PHEVs will be useful.

· · 6 years ago

The Prius C, a traditional hybrid (not a plug-in) that is more compact than the standard Prius, just recently went on sale in Japan. They sold 120,000 of them in just 5 days!!!

This was on top of 60,000 pre-orders. So they have a backlog of 180,000 orders and only a 30,000 per month manufacturing capacity. The car costs $19k so it is around $4k less than a standard Prius. The mileage is supposed to be better, but not by that much.

Of course cargo capacity is less, passenger space is less. They made the engine smaller so it doesn't perform much more sporty than the standard Prius. I was hoping they would put the standard engine in the C because that would have been fun, but they didn't.

So there is an arguement for reducing the cost a bit having a big impact on sales.

· Judgeless (not verified) · 6 years ago

@ EVNow - Ford Energi cannot get away from one negative; It is still a Ford.

· Sandman (not verified) · 6 years ago

Prius vs volt, I think depends on your driving routine. I live in a pretty small town where 15 miles will get me pretty much anywhere I need to go & either one will be electric as long as I stay in town. Exceed the electric range & with the prius, I still have the respectable hybrid to fall back on. With the volt, I turn history back 20 years to the old internal combustion engine. If I had a longer commute, maybe the volt would make sense.

Nissan Leaf??? It's a nice touch not even having a tail pipe, but I guess you'd tow it on a long trip?

· · 6 years ago

". . . depends on your driving routine"
I fully agree with this.
I see the Leaf being best for those who burn up a lot of gasoline in the suburbs of our large cities with 40 - 100 mile daily commuting routines on high-speed freeways. The Volt's 30 mile and Prius's 8 mile / 62 mph EV limits will make these vehicles unable to warrant the additional expense.
As such, the Leaf will probably do more to end our energy dependence than the Prius and Volt because of who they serve.
The folks with these long commutes burn out cars so quickly that it is worth dedicating a car to commuting and keeping another (probably roomier) car for long trips.

· james braselton (not verified) · 6 years ago

hi there i have seen and sat in a prius hybride the dealer actualy turned on the car and the dissplay says up too 100 mpg thats right tripple diggets soo 100 mpg at 12 gallons of fule you have a true range up too 1,200 miles thats right 4 didget range over 1,000 miles per tank and battery too and yes prius has a star ship guage cluster all digtal heads up dissply like star trek and star wars space ships

· james braselton (not verified) · 6 years ago

hi there vw needs a hybride tdi engene my vw tdi gets 60 mpg a hybride tdi would get a whopping 120 mpg a plug in hybride tdi 200 mpg why wont the green get behind a hybride tdi

· · 6 years ago

@james braselton,
A hybrid diesel wouldn't even need to complexities that the Turbo Direct Injection (TDI) brings. TDI enables the diesel engine to operate relatively efficiently over all of the differing power, torque, and speed loads that a car has to handle. The electric motor in a hybrid would handle all of that and enable even a very simple diesel to operate extremely efficiently.
I fully agree that a diesel hybrid (preferably a plug-in hybrid) makes a whole lot of sense.

· Anonymous (not verified) · 6 years ago

Volt is far superior in driving dynamic. It is faster, handles better and it is also more stylish. Volt cost about $4k more than the Prius plugin after tax rebates are included. But if you have slightly longer commute, then you can have gas free mode for most of the time. Prius can't even get you to work in EV mode only if you drive the speed limit on the hwy...

Volt is a superior choice if you like driving. Prius is a choice if you like to drive slow and treat the car like appliance.

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