The 2007 Toyota Prius is best known as one of the earliest mass-produced hybrid vehicles, and it enjoys popularity amongst consumers concerned with fuel economy. When it debuted in the U.S., it received a muted reception because of its small and conservative appearance. Later generations get more attention, especially from those concerned about the environment.
The name Prius comes from the Latin ""to go before,"" and its innovative definitely goes ahead of time. In spite of its hybrid classification, its acceleration and driving remain relatively unaffected, and it makes a reliable and durable choice for anyone looking for a hybrid car that doesn't cost the earth to buy. Since its debut in 2001, it has faced concerns about long-term reliability and durability, but these seem unfounded, although people buying older models should choose carefully as parts get expensive to replace. In general, like other Toyota cars, it comes built to last.
Body Styles: sedan
Engines: 1.5-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: continuously variable
Models: Toyota Prius, Toyota Prius Touring
In 2007, Toyota added the Touring model to the choice of Prius cars, serving as a much sportier car than the base version. This year Toyota includes front-seat side airbags and full-length head curtain airbags standard with the base model.
The 2007 Toyota Prius looks very distinctive and instantly recognizable as a Toyota hybrid. The exterior looks attractive and appealing. The base model comes fitted with 15-inch aluminium wheels, while the Touring model uses 16-inch wheels and xenon headlights and fog lamps. As a sportier, it comes with a sport-tuned suspension.
The interior looks well-designed and the dashboard and display remains easy to see and read. The front seats feel quite comfortable, but some people find the driving position a little awkward as the seat doesn’t offer height adjustment, and the steering wheel isn't telescopic. The back seat feels relatively roomy, and models offer 14.4 cubic feet of storage space in the trunk.
The 2007 Toyota Prius base model comes with a six-speaker stereo, climate control, cruise control, steering-wheel-mounted audio and climate controls, and a trip computer. The Touring trim level has a sport-tuned suspension, making it more fun to drive.
Optional extras include an MP3 player, a nine-speaker stereo, a DVD-based navigation system, leather seating, a rear parking camera, and Bluetooth technology. A Smart Key system enables users to unlock or lock the doors and even start the car with the key still in your pocket. Models equipped with the navigation system have a voice command system that enables users to control a number of features including temperature adjustment and cell phone dialing.
Performance & Handling
The 2007 Toyota Prius uses a gas-electric drivetrain called Hybrid Synergy Drive. It uses a 1.5-liter, four-cylinder gas engine in conjunction with an electric-drive motor that draws power from a battery pack. When combined they produce 110 hp. A second electric motor gets used as a generator to recharge the batteries, and the primary electric drive motor uses energy captured during braking. When driven at low speeds the Prius can run on electric power only.
In spite of all this technology the Prius makes a very practical car for everyday use. Its interior easily accommodates a family of four. It features electric-assist steering, which gives it a tight turning circle perfect for maneuvering in urban areas. This nice but unexciting car proves exceptionally good in cities due to its maneuverability and good visibility.
The 2007 Prius includes a number of standard safety features, including anti-lock brakes with brake assist, front-seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, and traction control. Stability control remains an optional extra. In crash tests the car earns four out of five stars for driver and front-seat passenger protection in frontal impacts and the highest possible rating for front-occupant protection.
EPA Fuel Economy
Toyota Prius: 46/48 mpg city/highway
Toyota Prius Touring: 46/48 mpg city/highway
- Fuel economy
- Low emissions
- Spacious interior
- Good build quality
- Good maneuverability
You Won't Like
- Fuel usage slightly below EPA estimates
- Not as agile as other midsize sedans
A fuel-efficient car for a great price.
If You Like This Vehicle
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- Honda Civic Hybrid
- Nissan Sentra