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  #1  
Old 08-17-2010, 08:29 AM
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Prius Question

The oldest Prius must be pushing 10 years old by now. I wonder how the battery is holding up? Resale prices will probably sink like a stone for Priuses with bad batteries.

How expensive are they to R & R? Anyone know?

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  #2  
Old 08-17-2010, 09:16 AM
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A battery pack runs less than $2k right now. Remember, the Prius is a hybrid and not all electric. The battery system is very small and only used to launch the vehicle, once up to speed the super economic engine fires up and runs a lot more than the batteries ever will on there own.

As for how long they last, not sure. They have an 8 year/100k warranty. So I would think pretty good.

Personally I would rather have an efficient diesel!
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  #3  
Old 08-17-2010, 09:38 AM
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Only 2K eh? Well that doesn't sound too bad. Small print:- I reserve the right to be outraged if I find out the battery pack is about the same size as 4 car batteries or something like that!
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Old 08-17-2010, 09:50 AM
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I just read that for Toyota to do it, you will be up for about $4k. You can DYI for about $500
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  #5  
Old 08-17-2010, 10:11 AM
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That is actually not bad. For $2500 for a DIY kit, if you can get the car cheaply enough. A lot of owners will be dumping them at firesale prices when the battery acts up.

If you can get the car for less than a grand....what a deal
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  #6  
Old 08-17-2010, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benhogan View Post
That is actually not bad. For $2500 for a DIY kit, if you can get the car cheaply enough. A lot of owners will be dumping them at firesale prices when the battery acts up.

If you can get the car for less than a grand....what a deal
Yeah but you're assuming that the rest of the car is OK - how well do you think an underpowered petrol motor will fair?
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  #8  
Old 08-17-2010, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benhogan View Post
The oldest Prius must be pushing 10 years old by now. I wonder how the battery is holding up? Resale prices will probably sink like a stone for Priuses with bad batteries.

How expensive are they to R & R? Anyone know?
Interesting question as we near the "lifespan" of the battery pack. I put it in quotes because of the wide variation depending on whom the information comes from.

I still see some first generation ('01-'03) Priuses...Priusii...Prius'...?...driving around. I preferred the look of those to the later ones but I suspect drag coefficient dictated the change. Or maybe the fact that the Gen I ones just blended in and didn't scream "LOOK AT ME AND MY HYBRID! WE'RE SAVING THE EARTH!" that so many Prius owners seem to love.

I still think it's an interesting concept, but would prefer a diesel to a hybrid. That said, if I could find one cheap enough to convert to a full electric for bombing around the 'hood in, I'd consider one.

I have always wondered why the Prius gets so much chatter while the Gen II Honda Insight wallows along in relative obscurity. I think it's a better looking vehicle, albeit still not particularly attractive. And when the Toyota accelerator "problems" ran rampant (which is now appearing to be more operator error than mechanical), Honda wasn't able to garner any more attention.
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  #9  
Old 08-17-2010, 11:25 AM
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So how do you know if your battery is bad ?

Unless there is a "blue screen of death" on the dashboard - you dont - all you see is that the battery doesn't last as long as it used to (...and are you sure ?)

I'm guessing that a not lot of Prius batteries around going to fail outright, they are going to lose capacity between the 10 and 20 year mark and then (maybe) fail completely around 20 years. And I'm going to guess that when the battery does fail completely:
a) the IC motor will still move the car
b) there is some kind of protective fusing that will keep the batteries from heating up/melting things/causing catastrophic damage - if they DIDNT put some kinda protection between cells, then they will have earned the fallout that will occur the first time a Prius gives poor kid a 3rd degree burn and the internet gets a hold of the pictures.

That being the case, a 10y/o Prius is still a usable machine - it'll run its IC motor more, and fuel economy will take a hit, but if you never calculate your economy or call up that screen on the display - you'll never notice it. Even then, I can't see the economy of a 1.0l engine going less than 30mpg... Most batteries fail slowly over time by losing capacity.

If the rest of the car holds up ok (remains to be seen- they do have a LOT of computers...) and they still run when you turn the key, they will hold their value decently - I'm guessing that a small hybrid with a dead battery will still get 30mpg - which is better than the 1997 VW jetta (that I just sold) got.

We'll see.
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  #10  
Old 08-17-2010, 11:47 AM
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We've got a Gen 1 Prius with 105K on the odo -- my wife drives it mostly. It's been pretty trouble-free for 50K miles. The next time I take it in for service to change the inverter coolant (probably this fall) I'm going to ask them to check the battery terminal connections -- I read where spotty connections can contribute to reduced battery life.

The car gets about 43 mpg, mainly because it gets a lot of highway miles (it does better in town) and because I went to a plus-zero tire size. The car was dangerously unstable at highway speed with the original economy tire width. It cost a couple mpgs but reduced the worries about piling into an oncoming semi in a crosswind.

Beyond that, it has little sound deadening, for that "tin can" effect, and it's showing some rust on the passenger side door. It handles like a go-kart with the wider tires, but acceleration is "character-building." On the plus side, it's a little snowplow in the winter with Hakkapeliitta RSI tires.

The sound system is crap, the headlghts are crap -- did I mention that my wife is the primary driver?
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  #11  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:03 PM
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My best friend's gf had a prius, I rode in it quite often. She was an awful driver. She would mash the gas (so a gas and electric combined takeoff) and then would always complain about how she only averaged 27mpg with her prius. It made me wonder how many other Prius drivers are like that and why she had one in the first place...


Just my little story, carry on!
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  #12  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:15 PM
I miss my MBZ
 
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Interesting similarity - the only Prius driver's I know are women also...


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  #13  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbomachines View Post
My best friend's gf had a prius, I rode in it quite often. She was an awful driver. She would mash the gas (so a gas and electric combined takeoff) and then would always complain about how she only averaged 27mpg with her prius. It made me wonder how many other Prius drivers are like that and why she had one in the first place...


Just my little story, carry on!

Here you go.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKTOyiKLARk

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  #14  
Old 08-17-2010, 12:22 PM
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11.8s PRius

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  #15  
Old 08-17-2010, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbomachines View Post
My best friend's gf had a prius, I rode in it quite often. She was an awful driver. She would mash the gas (so a gas and electric combined takeoff) and then would always complain about how she only averaged 27mpg with her prius. It made me wonder how many other Prius drivers are like that and why she had one in the first place...


Just my little story, carry on!
My friend and I were laughing at one going about 90 the other day on I91, as we followed it in his E300D. The E300D is a vastly better car and at that speed was probably getting better mileage than the Pius.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOvp69lnZbA&feature=related
I really do hate these cars.

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