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2014 Toyota Prius v: Superb fuel economy, practicality

The Toyota Prius v offers outstanding fuel economy in a package that's larger than the original Prius.
The Toyota Prius v offers outstanding fuel economy in a package that's larger than the original Prius.
Toyota

Toyota Prius v

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What’s better than a small, fuel-efficient vehicle that’s also practical?
Beats me.
The Toyota Prius has been the standard bearer among hybrid vehicle for a number of years. And those who own them typically swear by them.
But they are a bit on the small side.
So realizing this, Toyota a couple of years ago introduced the Prius v, which offers the outstanding fuel economy that Prius has been known for, but adds a good deal of space so that you can haul family and goods.
For the 2014 model year, there aren’t many changes to the Prius v.
There is now an optional panoramic moonroof, as well as standard daytime running lights.
All else is pretty much the same.
And that’s a good thing, because the Prius v is a good vehicle.
It has 34.3 cubic feet of cargo space in the rear, which is accessed by a hatchback door.
If you fold the rear seats down, cargo space expands to 67.3 cubic feet.
And those rear seats slide fore and aft, so passengers back there can have ample leg room.
Just like in the original Prius, the controls sit atop the center console, which has long been one of the Prius’s quirks. But it’s not too difficult to deal with.
Automatic climate control, a touchscreen that controls the audio system and Bluetooth connectivity are standard.
Navigation system, heated front seats and Toyota’s Entune infotainment system are optional.
The Prius v is powered by a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine and an electric motor. The pairing creates 134 horsepower. There are four driving settings: normal, power, eco (for increased fuel economy) and EV-drive, which makes the car run on electricity only for as long as it can.
Fuel efficiency is rated at a stellar 44 mpg city, 40 highway.
The Prius v starts at around $27,000 and runs to about $31,000.
So, what beats a practical, fuel-efficient small vehicle?
A slightly larger practical, fuel-efficient vehicle.
That’s the Prius v.