The 2021 Toyota Prius Prime is available in three trim levels: LE, XLE and Limited. The base
LE ($28,220, plus $955 destination fee) comes standard with 15-in alloy wheels, LED headlights, automatic high beams,
forward collision warning with automatic braking and pedestrian and bicyclist detection, lane-departure warning and intervention,
adaptive cruise control, heated mirrors, passive keyless entry and push-button start, a backup camera, a height-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats, cloth upholstery, fabric seats and a steering wheel trimmed with SofTex vinyl. One big differentiator between this model and the others is its infotainment system. This one uses a smaller 7-in touchscreen, but it includes Android Auto in addition to Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa integration. Android Auto is new for the Prius Prime this year, and this is the only model to get it. The
XLE ($30,000) adds automatic LED headlights, an 8-way power driver’s seat, SofTex vinyl seats, a wireless smartphone charging pad, and an 11.6-in vertically oriented touchscreen with navigation and a premium audio system. The big screen certainly looks cool, similar to those found in a Tesla, but we found it has a lot of glare. We actually prefer the smaller 7-in setup in the LE model. The
Limited ($34,400) adds LED fog lights, automatic wipers, blind-spot monitoring and
rear cross-traffic alert systems, parking sensors, an automatic parking system, a heated steering wheel, a color head-up display, an upgraded cargo cover, additional smartphone apps, Safety Connect emergency communications and a 10-speaker JBL sound system. All Prius Prime models includes Toyota Care -- 2 years/25,000 miles of complimentary maintenance, plus 3 years of roadside assistance.
Every Prius Prime comes standard with anti-lock brakes,
stability and traction control, front side airbags, a driver’s knee airbag, full-length airbags and a backup camera. More importantly, it includes Toyota’s robust Safety Sense suite that has been upgraded for 2021 to the 2.0 system. As before it includes lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking and radar cruise control. Now it also the ability to read and relay road signs, plus bicyclist detection. Also standard on all 2021 Toyota Prius Prime models is Safety Connect. Base LE models get a 1-year trial, while the higher trims include 3 years of this service that enables you to connect and check on the vehicle with a mobile device to do things like lock and unlock the doors, and also offers helpful features like emergency and roadside assistance. The government hasn’t yet crash-tested the Prius Prime, but the nonprofit Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has, naming it a Top Safety Pick for its top performance in all pertinent categories.
2022 Toyota Prius Prime vs the competition
2019 Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid — The Ioniq Hybrid is a serious competitor for the Prius Prime, delivering comparable fuel economy and electric-only range for less money. It’s also more enjoyable to drive.
2020 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid — The Clarity can go 48 miles on electricity, meaning it could be a better choice than the Prius Prime for those with longer commutes. It’s also bigger and more luxurious.
2020 Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid — The
Niro’s all-electric range matches the Prius Prime’s and offers a distinctive crossover body style. Its fuel economy when not in all-electric mode isn’t as good as the Prime, but it’s still an excellent 46 mpg combined. Watch how much will fit in the Niro Plug-In Hybrid’s trunk.
Used Chevrolet Volt — Chevrolet made the controversial decision to kills its groundbreaking plug-in car after the 2019 model year, but you can still find a great used one for under $20,000. Like the Prius, it also is a hatchback and has less polarizing looks. Its electric range is farther, too, at 53 miles.
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