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Forrest Gump's Mama Was Right; Life is in Fact Just Like a Box of Chocolates

Forrest Gump's Mama Was Right; Life is in Fact Just Like a Box of Chocolates

On the road to Tesla ownership…

I have been remiss from this board for a few months due to forest fires that took place around my California home over the summer. Around my home, but fortunately not in my home. In a twist of fate though my purchase of a Model 3 has been forestalled due to this incident. Having reserved on the first day after the announcement, and living two hours from the factory, I was expecting delivery in late 2017 or the first half of 2018. Maybe. Perhaps.

But while evacuated from home when the fires were raging, my 23 year old Corolla wagon died an untimely death at a quiet intersection in Santa Barbara. With my homies all in Hawaii, and an estimated repair cost from a local mechanic coming in higher than the value of the car, I chose to abandon the vehicle. I needed another car fast, and a few phone calls later I had it that Toyota was offering the best lease rates at the time. A rep from the dealership swooped down to pick me up, and two hours later I was driving off the Toyota lot in a brand new 4th generation 2016 Prius.

Wait. What? A Prius? Those funky looking electric car wannabes that I’ve never had the slightest interest in, and in fact had never stepped foot in?

Yeah. That car. But at $165 a month I had taken the bait. For the next three years I am driving a Prius. So the Model 3 will be pushed back to 2019.

In the meantime I have kinda fallen in love. With the Prius. Wow. Toyota has really been doing its homework. This is a no compromise car. It has comfort, power, great fuel economy, and great looks.

To be fair, the styling of the 2016 Prius is controversial. When I saw the Gun Metal Gray version on the lot I went right to it. Loved the look. It was only later that I read of the controversy over the styling. In fact, one blogger termed the 2016 Prius uglier than the Leaf. I have to say, knowing that the looks of the Prius will turn some people’s stomach when I’m driving down the road… adds to the appeal of the car.

In fact, I might just buy this car outright at lease end and forego the Model 3. The two cars are more similar than different. Think about it. The M3 has a battery. The Prius has a battery. The M3 has stunning looks. The Prius has stunning looks. The M3 has superior fuel economy, but is the Prius really that far behind? I think that anyone discerning a real, practical difference between the two vehicles is simply nitpicking.

Anyway, glad to be back home.

Coastal

quinney | 08. November 2016

Are you related to Forrest?

gekcut | 08. November 2016

I never liked the Prius but the newest version does have a lot going for it. If no unlimited SC option, I will be considering it.

Unfortunately my experience has not been good in regard to Prius drivers. I find most fall in two classes. One group is trying to get maximum mileage and accelerates very slowly and pokes along. The other seems to feel the need to show that their Prius can out run your vehicle and drive very aggressively. There are some Prius drivers who drive normally but they seem to be in the minority.

TeslaTap.com | 09. November 2016

@gekcut - Does the Prius include unlimited free gas? :)

Coastal Cruiser. | 09. November 2016

"Are you related to Forrest?"

Snort. Good one.

PhillyGal | 09. November 2016

@Coastal - I'm sorry for your troubles, but quite happy you like your Prius. I hope it serves you well and by the time you switch to a Model 3, there will probably be some really cool features that we can not even imagine today.

Coastal Cruiser. | 09. November 2016

Thank you PG. It was disappointing at first to have to push back delivery until '19, but I am quite at peace with the circumstances now. The Prius is working out to be a nice bridge car for a cheapskate like me who has been driving clunkers for the past decade or two. :>

jmda61 | 09. November 2016

gekcut........ I have 2016 Prius and in the summer I can get 3.4L/100Km or 70 miles/ us gal on the highway @ 60mph. I have reserved a Model 3 and wanted the $2000 option for unlimited SC, I am now on the fence with the SC change. The Prius is more economical than the Volt when you make 200 mile round trips and costs at least $8000 less in Canada. The starting price for the Model 3 in Canada is about $42000.. How about someone make a Forum topic about people thinking about changing their mind about purchase with SC change

gekcut | 09. November 2016

@TeslaTap

No, but you have not been following my posts so you would not understand why your question is too simplistic.

An unlimited SC option would be a big plus for the 3 when compared to the Prius or other ICEs. While I am sure you won't believe this, ICEs have their own advantages when compared to the 3 (I wouild be happy to discuss them). In the end if no unlimited SC option on the 3, the pros of an ICE will probably outweigh the other pros of the 3 for me.

cb500r | 09. November 2016

Funny, I had the same thought, selling my Passat, going for a Prius and then turn over to the M3.
I had a Prius from 2008-2014. It was and is one of my most loved cars.
Lot of room inside (I was able to move easy from the driver seat to the other one), huge trunk and legroom in the second row.
Also the silence at traffic lights or when the car is going downhill.
I also tried the Prius4 and driving, room,... everything is a huge step forward, while the previous one was a step backwards for me.
Some features are still uncool for me.
Why does the reverse drive has to beep inside instead of outside?
Why is the cruise control not working at 20mi/h, it's where I use it most often to focus on other cars instead of the speed?
Why is the lane control not able to hold me inside my lane, it let me slip over by 20% of the car width before taken back into lane...
Do you still have to agree to the Nav-system each time you start the car, that you are responsible,...?
Does it allow today to choose all options during drive?
The old Prius greyed 95% out... I know there was an update available, but I haven't had it ;-)

Tesla, if you read this, don't do this to me!!!
By the way, I decided to stay with my Passat and drive more bicycle for now.

bj | 09. November 2016

Each to their own, but in my book any hybrid is a compromise and a poor one at that. Kinda half-pregnant. Mechanically very complex (lots of things that can go wrong), two engines/motors and two drivetrains, loss of interior space due to two engines/motors and drivetrains, and one permanent dead-weight in the vehicle (namely, whichever drivetrain is not being used at any one point in time). And the fact that they still use petrol and still produce pollution (CO2, noxious gases, and particulate pollution) even though not as much as conventional ICE.

And what price can anyone put on the pleasure of driving a BEV. So smooth, simple, quiet and powerful. Just beautiful to drive.

Nope, it's BEV all the way for me. As soon as I get my Model 3, I plan to never drive an ICE ever again.

gekcut | 09. November 2016

@bj

Lots of good points for the BEV but it is a sign of a true believer that you did not mention any advantages of an hybrid at this stage of the game.

Coastal Cruiser. | 09. November 2016

@cb500r
Some features are still uncool for me.
Why does the reverse drive has to beep inside instead of outside?

There may be an answer to this question. I think it's actually there to alert the driver they are in reverse. I had the dealer turn the constant beep OFF so that it only emits one [mandatory] beep when reverse is first engaged. But after a month I had them re-enable it again. Given the shifter is tiny and mounted on dash, AND returns to the same center position regardless of gear (it's electronic, not mechanical), I was accidentally leaving the car in reverse and then giving it the gas. Whoops.

Why is the cruise control not working at 20mi/h, it's where I use it most often to focus on other cars instead of the speed?

Me too. And why doesn't cruise work when vehicles is set for aggressive regen braking? (I'm sure Toyota would state its for safety. And I guess I won't disagree cause I was worng about the backup indicator. ;>)

Why is the lane control not able to hold me inside my lane, it let me slip over by 20% of the car width before taken back into lane...
I have a Prius "2" (entry level). No lane keeping.

Do you still have to agree to the Nav-system each time you start the car, that you are responsible,...?
Does it allow today to choose all options during drive?
Mine ain't got Nav either.

@bj
Each to their own, but in my book any hybrid is a compromise and a poor one at that. Kinda half-pregnant. Mechanically very complex (lots of things that can go wrong), two engines/motors and two drivetrains, loss of interior space due to two engines/motors and drivetrains, and one permanent dead-weight in the vehicle (namely, whichever drivetrain is not being used at any one point in time).

That is pretty much how I felt bj, before I bought one and learned some ins and outs. Mechanically very complex or not, these cars don't break very often. I have had many many Prius owners in my car and they all report remarkably few problems. I met a pilot who has 4 in his family and has only had to replace one main battery and one starter battery, in totality. He told me he drives his like a go-kart. Apparently cabbies in many cities are switching to Priuses due to fuel economy and reliability.

And I get constant remarks about how roomy the car is for its class (especially from prior generation Prius owners).

And the fact that they still use petrol and still produce pollution (CO2, noxious gases, and particulate pollution) even though not as much as conventional ICE.

You're right of course, and there is no argument for a hybrid over a BEV. Unless -at this stage of the electric price point / range game a BEV is not practical. For those folks the Prius is worth looking at.

Like I said, it's a good bridge car. It's a convincing argument that even right now the pure ICE car is no longer mandatory for this size range.

Cheers
Coastal

Ross1 | 09. November 2016

Lot of room inside (I was able to move easy from the driver seat to the other one),

haha

bj | 10. November 2016

@gekcut it is a sign of a true believer that you did not mention any advantages of an hybrid at this stage of the game

Well yes, because I am a true believer in BEV (in general, not just Tesla). Never claimed otherwise. I love my Leaf, despite the mocking it sometimes gets here.

Hybrids clearly work for some people, otherwise the market wouldn't exist. It's good that they pollute less than conventional ICE and depress demand for fossil fuels, but for me, an interim tech is 'meh' when I have the opportunity to leap the whole way.

As I said, each to their own.

cb500r | 10. November 2016

@CoastalCruiser: Nice comments, thanks.

Compared to a normal actual engine, the Prius hybrid is much easier and reliable designed. They do not have up to 9 gears, only 1. The chargers are absent and they don't need to squeeze the engine to the last drop with the 55PS/liter. They only build the system to reliability and low fuel consumption.

To understand the Prius, it takes more than thinking about a normal car and adding a motor. The Prius in fact is a EV, nothing else. The front wheels are direct driven by the first motor/generator. The second (yes, the Prius has two motors) is balancing the rpm of the engine. Not even a clutch is necessary for the system, only a planetary gear set. This only works as a power distribution system, to add pressure on the gear which is on the same shaft as the first motor. The speed comes to 100% from the first motor. That also means that the second motor and the engine are optimized for torque and low rpm, not for speed as the first motor.

So you should love the Prius as well, it's an EV with a combustion battery, a starter battery and a buffer. With technical background, a Prius is a very clean car. It doesn't matter if you produce electricity in a solar cell at 20% efficiency + amount of none regenerative energies or burn fuel with 40% thermal efficiency (actual version). Regards to the filter technologies, both are very clean.

By the way, the Opel Ampera/Chevy Bolt of the first generation was the same hybrid technology as the Prius, only bigger battery.

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