2017 Prius Prime plugs into New York

2017 Toyota Prius Prime plugs into New York Photo 1

New luxe-level Prius promises 120 mpge

The popular Toyota Prius sedan gets a fresh plug-in hybrid for its New York auto show display with the 2017 Prius Prime. The new top trim level adds creature comforts like a massive 11.6-inch infotainment screen, head-up display and wireless phone charging. On top of the loaded interior, Toyota claims the plug-in hybrid can span twice the previous generation’s battery-only range for a new total of 22 miles — nice, but not up to range of other plug-ins like the Chevy Volt and plug-in Hyundai Sonata.

In addition to more range, the top speed in EV mode increases to 84 mph making the Prius Prime capable of handling a short highway commute without switching on the gas engine. Charging the 8.8kWh battery will take 5.5 hours with a normal 110v home outlet, but jumping to a heavy-duty 240v charger will cut that time in half. The gas part of the Prius Prime’s hybrid drive system is the same as the rest of the fourth-generation Prius lineup — a 1.8-liter Atkinson gas engine.

While the standard Prius Prime is luxurious, it can be optioned further with modern tech, such as Intelligent Parking Assist and an Entune multimedia bundle. The Intelligent Parking Assist will not only slide into a parallel parking spot, but will also move itself out of the parking spot without additional assistance from the driver.

Missing are the wild front and rear fascias from the rest of the Prius line. Replacing the polarizing styling is more modest styling with less-wild looking LED headlights and subdued looking taillights. While the change might be a surprise to some, it makes sense for the luxury model to be more elegant than its lower-priced siblings. Speaking of price, Toyota hasn’t mentioned much, though with the current top-dog Prius Four Touring starting at $30,835, it’s safe to assume the Prime will set you back more.

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