Toyota has released details for their upcoming Prius Plug-in, a car which takes aim at the Chevy Volt.
Now that all of the big reveals at the Frankfurt Auto Show are over, Toyota has released some figures for the upcoming Prius Plug-in. In pure electric mode, it is rated at 87-MPGe and 49-mpg in conventional hybrid mode. The pure electric number is a bit lower than the Chevy Volt's, but the conventional hybrid number is much higher, and this has caused some (most notably CNN Money) to say the Prius is therefore indisputably better, but that overlooks a very important fact.
The Prius Plug-in can only travel 15 miles as a pure electric, while the Volt can easily do double that, and sometimes triple. The Volt's range seems much more suited to saving fuel while doing one's daily commuting, an important factor which we feel is impossible to ignore. On the other hand, Toyota has said that the Prius will be significantly cheaper and have a very short (2 1/2 to 3 hours) charging time, which is also difficult to ignore. The question of which one to buy will simply come down to a question of priorities.