3 Sports Cars Slower Than the New Toyota Prius
By now, most agree that the newest Toyota Prius and Prius Prime are genuinely desirable options for more than just fuel economy. A drastic bump in power and sharp styling have drawn plenty of attention to Toyota’s most maligned product. Even some prominent sports cars are slower than the new Prius.
A new Acura Integra is slower than a Toyota Prius
The Acura Integra is the new kid on the block, but it’s little more than a borrowed name from an old legend. While the Integra Type S is a surefire upgrade, the base Integra leaves much to be desired.
A 1.5-liter turbocharged engine offers just 200 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque, and the four-door compact takes nearly eight seconds to get to 60 mph. Compare that to the 7.1-second sprint in the all-wheel drive Prius and it’s no wonder Acura scrambled to deliver the upgraded option.
Points for the Integra include a spacious interior and cargo space, both of which are limited in the new Prius. But for a supposed performance car based on such a legendary model, the new Integra shouldn’t even be in the same league.
Honda Civic Si
Though it offers four more horsepower than the new Toyota Hybrid, the Honda Civic Si takes longer to get to 60 mph than the latest Prius. With a 7.6-second zero to 60 mph time, the Si is nearly a half-second slower to highway speed than the Prius with all-wheel drive. And considering the 220-horsepower Prius Prime is coming as well, we expect that model to trounce the entry-level Honda sports car as well.
The Civic Si is lighter than the Integra and the new Prius and, as such, remains one of the best-handling front-drive sports cars. But considering the Prius’ standing as a comfort-focused econobox, that it’s in the same conversation for power and acceleration is a feat all its own.
There’s no doubt that the Mazda Miata will handily outduel the new Prius when it comes to handling twisty back roads. Its lightness and rear-drive setup all but guarantee that outcome. But thanks to its upgraded powertrain, the Prius matches what the Miata can do in a straight line. According to Car and Driver, zero to 60 mph times are virtually identical between the two when comparing Prius models with all-wheel drive. And once again, the added grunt from the upcoming Prius Prime should handily out-drag the Miata in a straight line.
The new Toyota Prius isn’t a sports car – but it could be
Nobody claims that the Prius is a sports car from the showroom floor. Despite improvements, it is still a soft, comfort-focused hatchback out of the box. But with tuning companies like HKS developing performance suspension options, there is a good chance you’ll find a new Prius at an autocross event in the near future.
Time will tell if the Prius market will expand to enthusiasts looking for an outside-the-box project, but as of today, things are looking good.