The All-New 2023 Toyota Prius Has 6 Minor Drawbacks
Late last year, Toyota unveiled the jaw-droppingly gorgeous fifth-generation Prius. The new hybrid hatchback shed its bulbous, perennially ugly exterior for a sleek, low-slung, sporty appearance. The 196-horsepower all-new 2023 Toyota Prius is also the fastest ever.
That’s not saying much, but a seven-second 0-60 mph time is nothing to laugh at, and neither is 50 mpg. There’s little to complain about with the new Prius, but six minor drawbacks may lead to slight annoyance.
1. Bargain interior
With a radical redesign, no part of the Prius was left untouched. However, reviewers lament the lack of premium finishes in the hybrid’s interior. The new Prius still has a surplus of hard plastics as the sedan segment seems to be phasing them out. For instance, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid offers a much better interior at the same price point. U.S. News also says the Honda Insight has a “classier” interior teamed with a lower starting MSRP.
2. Cramped rear seating row
The 2023 Toyota Prius sports a much more athletic façade in its latest generation. With a lower roofline, it has looks that impress, but there is a cost to beauty. While the two-row hybrid is said to seat three in the rear, it’s cumbersome for adults. Head and legroom are scarce in the back, but luckily the front row doesn’t experience the same trade-off in space.
3. Less cargo space than the previous model
Not only does the car’s sloping roofline cut into passenger room, but cargo space. The fourth-generation 2022 Toyota Prius boasted 27.4 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats. However, that drops to 23.8 cubic feet in the base 2023 Prius LE. The better-equipped XLE and Limited models do with just 20.3 cubic feet.
4. Noisy cockpit
Although the 2023 Toyota Prius is praised for improving cabin comfort, there’s still a noise issue. Edmunds says, “excessive tire, wind, and engine noise under acceleration holds the Prius back from being a fully relaxing car to drive.”
5. Uncooled wireless charging pad
Wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functions come standard in the new Prius. But only the upper trim levels have a wireless charging pad behind the gear selector. While the unplugged nature of charging is a welcome sight, owners should know that the pad doesn’t have a built-in cooling system. Reviewers say smartphones will “come out feeling toasty” after an hour of charging.
6. Fussy and obstructed gauge cluster
The Toyota Prius has a gauge cluster located directly behind the steering wheel for the first time. While this is great for packaging and conventional driving display continuity, many find it offers too much information for the unit. Its cluttered appearance aside, it’s also partially obstructed by the top of the steering wheel.
When will the all-new 2023 Toyota Prius be available?
The new Prius is already showing up at dealerships and into customer hands, but only in some metropolitan regions across the U.S. Toyota plans to roll out the full spread of trim levels and options over the first half of 2023. Therefore, specific add-ons may not be available until spring.
For 2023, the Prius will come in three trim levels—LE, XLE, and Limited. Base MSRP begins at $27,450 per Toyota. The XLE rises to $30,895, and the range-topping Limited is $34,465. For those looking to make the new Prius an all-weather car, all-wheel drive is a $1,400 option on any trim level.