After seven long years, Toyota has finally gotten around to giving its Prius a redesign. It no longer looks like the hybrid we’ve all come to know. It’s completely redesigned from top to bottom with new tech, power, and features, making it both the quickest and the most efficient Prius ever. And while we saw some details on the Japanese- and European-market Prius earlier today, here we’ll discuss the specs and features of the 2023 Prius and Prius Prime that we’ll get here in the U.S. Let’s dive in.
Toyota knows what it’s doing when it comes to the Prius Hybrid, with more than 20 years and 20 million units under the company’s belt (5 million of which were sold in North America). The new Prius rides on the second generation of the TNGA-C (Toyota New Global Architecture) platform that underpins numerous vehicles around the world, including the Toyota Corolla and the C-HR. Designed in Japan, the new Prius is two inches lower and one inch wider than the outgoing generation, with a one-inch-lower hip point that Toyota says will give the hybrid a sportier feel.
The biggest news is under the hood. On the base-model Prius Hybrid, the fifth-generation hybrid drivetrain is built around a 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder, paired with an all-new lithium-ion battery pack (replacing the previous nickel-metal battery). The result is 194 hp on front-wheel drive Prius models, or 196 hp with the optional all-wheel drive that throws an electric motor on the rear axle, an increase of 74 hp over the last Prius. Toyota says the base 2023 Prius will do 0-60 in 7.2 seconds on front-drive models, or 7 seconds flat with all-wheel drive, a huge improvement over the last Prius’s 9.8-second sprint. EPA fuel economy numbers are not yet available, but Toyota says we can expect as much as 57 mpg combined on the front-drive base-model 2023 Prius.
The 2023 Prius will be available in three trims. The model line starts with the base-model Prius LE. Stepping up to XLE gives you 19-inch wheels, heated seats, and an optional panoramic glass roof, among other upgrades, while the top-spec Prius Limited gets the panoramic roof standard along with the upgraded infotainment system and stereo, which we’ll explain below.
Toyota first got into the plug-in hybrid game in 2012, introducing the Prius PHEV with the debut of the third generation model. When the current= Prius arrived in 2016, the Prius PHEV was renamed Prius Prime. For 2023, the second-generation Prius Prime has seriously upped its game. Simply put, the plug-in Prius Prime is the most high-performance Prius ever.
While the Prius Prime has the same 2.0-liter engine as the standard Prius Hybrid, the Prime gets a larger battery pack for improved all-electric driving range. The result is the most powerful Prius ever made, putting out 220 hp total and good for a manufacturer-claimed 6.6-second zero to 60 mph time. Toyota says you’ll get 50 percent more all-electric driving range compared to the last Prius Prime, which should mean around 37 miles of zero-emissions driving with a fully-charged battery. (Official EPA numbers for fuel economy and battery range have not yet been finalized.) As far as we can tell, all-wheel drive will not be available on the 2023 Prius Prime.
The Prius Prime also gets an optional solar-panel roof, which helps to charge up the hybrid drive system’s battery while the car is parked, and provides energy for accessories like air conditioning when the car is on the move.
The 2023 Prius Prime will be available in three trim levels, starting with the base-model Prius Prime SE. Stepping up to XSE gets you 19-inch wheels, clear taillights, and SofTex seat upholstery, while the top-spec XSE Premium brings the upgraded infotainment and stereo as standard, along with the panoramic roof (or the optional solar-panel roof) and heated and ventilated front seats.
For 2023, the Prius interior gets a full redesign, ditching the last generation’s giant portrait-oriented touchscreen in favor of a standard 8-inch or upgrade 12.3-inch landscape screen with Over The Air upgrade capability, and physical buttons controlling the HVAC system. A JBL sound system is optional, and every Prius gets a big, chunky knob for the gear shift.
The 2023 Prius comes standard with Toyota Safety Sense 3.0, a full suite of driver assistance and safety aids including lane-change assist, front cross-traffic alert with pedestrian detection, and parking assist. A new Proactive Driving Assist uses cameras and radar to provide what Toyota describes as “gentle braking and/or steering” assistance to adjust your speed going into a curve, or control your distance between the vehicle in front of you or while passing a pedestrian or cyclist. Lane Tracing Assist helps keep the vehicle centered in its lane and maintains an appropriate distance from vehicles in other lanes while navigating a corner, while Emergency Driving Stop System provides attention alerts and can even bring the vehicle to a stop if the driver is not in control — for example, during a medical emergency. The new multimedia system includes an AT&T wifi hotspot.
Toyota isn’t talking availability details just yet; pricing for the 2023 Prius will be announced before the year’s end, while pricing for the Prius Prime will be announced in the first half of 2023. And stay tuned: Jalopnik will be driving the 2023 Prius soon, so look out for our full review.