Toyota Prius c FAQs
PUBLISHED THURSDAY, MARCH 10, 2022
Explore more about this iconic hatchback.
If you like the Toyota Prius but are looking for something a little smaller, try on the Toyota Prius c for size. This smaller version of the Toyota's "traditional" hatchback still offers seating for up to five people, but in a smaller and nimbler package.
Got questions about the Prius c? We've got the answers you're looking for to help you continue your vehicle search with confidence.
Toyota Prius c FAQs
Q: What are the different models of the Toyota Prius c?
A: Trim options for the Toyota Prius c can vary by model year. However, the 2019 Prius c is offered in two trim levels: the base L and the LE. Both are equipped with the same 1.5L four-cylinder hybrid powertrain that puts out 99 horsepower.
Q: Is the Toyota Prius c a reliable car?
A: Many factors can affect the reliability of a Prius c, including its driving history, maintenance records, and mileage. However, according to RepairPal® reliability data, the Prius c receives a 4.5/5 (Excellent) rating.1
RepairPal Reliability Ratings are based on the actual cost, frequency, and severity of unscheduled repairs and maintenance on make/model data for select 2006-2020 vehicles.
Q: Which Toyota Prius c should I buy?
A: The Toyota Prius c model that's right for you will depend on your budget and what kinds of features you're looking for in a hybrid car. The 2019 Prius c is offered in two trim configurations, so you can weigh your options and decide which is right for you.
The 2019 Prius c's base trim is the L. This model comes with such features as 15-inch wheels, keyless entry, automatic climate control, and a 6.1-inch touchscreen interface with voice commands.
Stepping up to the LE trim, on the other hand, will yield you some extra features that include a higher-resolution screen, built-in navigation system, and push-button start. Regardless of trim, all 2019 Prius c models are powered by a 1.5L four-cylinder hybrid engine.
Q: What does the "C" in Prius c stand for?
A: The "C" in the Prius c name reportedly stands for "City," which describes where this smaller hybrid vehicle is designed to perform its best. This model was Toyota's smallest hybrid vehicle during its stint of production from 2012 through 2019.
Q: What is the difference between a Prius and a Prius c?
A: While both the Prius and the Prius c are gasoline-hybrid vehicles, they are two different models. The main difference between the two is in size. Both vehicles can seat up to five passengers, but the standard Prius is much larger than the Prius c.
For comparison, let's look at the sizing of the 2019 Toyota Prius versus the 2019 Toyota Prius c. The 2019 Prius measures 180 inches long, whereas the Prius c is just 159.8 inches long. The 2019 Prius also offers more cargo storage space (24.6 cubic feet compared to 17.1 cubic feet on the 2019 Prius c).
Q: How much should I pay for a Toyota Prius c?
A: The amount you can expect to pay for a used Toyota Prius c will depend on many factors, including the model year and mileage of the vehicle. On average, however, a used 2019 Toyota Prius c sells for $21,000 based on CarMax sales data.2
Q: Does the Prius c have a transmission?
A: Yes, every Toyota Prius c is equipped with a transmission. For the 2019 model year, the Prius c comes with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) that is paired with its 1.5L four-cylinder engine and electric motor.
Q: What cars are similar to the Toyota Prius c?
A: As a small hybrid sedan, there are a number of vehicles on the market that are similar to the Toyota Prius c. Some examples of the Prius c's top competitors include the Hyundai IONIQ Hybrid, the Lexus CT200h, and the slightly larger Toyota Prius.
Q: Do you have to plug in a Prius c?
A: No, the Toyota Prius c is not a plug-in hybrid; it is a gasoline-hybrid that is powered by a combination of a combustion engine and an electric motor. Rather than being plugged in to charge its battery, the Prius c uses kinetic energy from regenerative braking to periodically recharge its on-board battery.
Q: What is the range of a Prius c?
A: Many factors can affect the range of a Prius c, including road conditions and vehicle condition. However, the 2019 Prius c with 1.5L four-cylinder engine and electric motor gets an EPA-estimated range of 437 miles on a full tank of gas.3
Q: Is the Prius c good for highway driving?
A: The 2019 Toyota Prius c gets an EPA-estimated 43 mpg on the highway with its 1.5L four-cylinder engine and electric motor.3 However, because of its reliance on regenerative braking, this vehicle gets better fuel economy with city driving than highway driving.
In fact, the 2019 Prius c with 1.5L four-cylinder engine and electric motor gets an EPA-estimated 48 mpg with city driving.3 This is because its on-board battery can be intermittently charged using kinetic energy each time the brakes are applied.
Q: How many batteries are in a Prius c?
A: All model years of the Toyota Prius c (2012-2019) are equipped with a single on-board battery that can be recharged using power from regenerative braking. This battery is then used to power the vehicle's electric motor in conjunction with the car's engine to save fuel.
Q: Is the Prius c all-wheel drive?
A: No, the Toyota Prius c is not available with all-wheel drive. Instead, every Toyota Prius c from 2012 through 2019 is offered exclusively with front-wheel drive. If you want an AWD Prius, you may want to check out the standard Toyota Prius hatchback instead.
Q: How long does it take to charge a Prius c battery?
A: The Toyota Prius c cannot run exclusively on power from its battery, and it cannot be plugged in to charge. Instead, the on-board battery relies on power from regenerative braking to recharge in small increments during regular stop-and-go driving.
Because of this, the amount of time it takes to recharge the battery on a Prius c will vary greatly depending on specific driving conditions. With a lot of stop-and-go driving, the battery will recharge more quickly. With highway driving, the battery will not recharge nearly as frequently.
Q: Can you jump-start a Prius c?
A: Yes, a Toyota Prius c can be jump-started just like any other vehicle with a standard battery. Because the Prius c's battery terminals aren't located in the engine bay, however, you will need to access them through the rear seats instead.
Q: Does the Toyota Prius c come in a manual transmission?
A: No, all model years of the Toyota Prius c (2012-2019) are offered exclusively with a continuously variable transmission (CVT), which uses two belt-linked pulleys to seamlessly change gear ratios as needed while driving.
Q: Is the Prius c being discontinued?
A: Yes, as of early 2022, the Prius c is no longer in production. Its final model year was 2019. There is a lot of speculation as to why the Prius c was discontinued, including rumors that this model could not keep up with competition from the Corolla Hybrid.
Find a Used Toyota Prius c Near You
Could a used Toyota Prius c be right for you? Take the next step in your vehicle hunt by browsing local inventory with help from CarMax.