The interior layout, fit and finish
The Prius is a striking car from the outside, and it's no different when you step aboard. Sections of white gloss trim break up the otherwise dark interior, which is mostly finished in hard but accurately moulded plastics, and if you find the white colour scheme too bright, you can also go for classy-looking piano-black trim inserts. The drive selector is a stubby lever protruding from the centre console that's very easy to operate once you're used to it, while other buttons and switches feel solid and have a precise action
As with previous generations of Prius, the dashboard layout is somewhat unconventional; traditional dials are replaced by a pair of 4.2in colour screens that sit atop the dash, slightly to the left of the driver's sight line. The right-hand screen covers basics such as speed and fuel level, while the left shows secondary data that enables highly detailed economy analysis, should you want it. All but the entry level Active trim-level also has a head-up display that projects information onto the windscreen directly ahead of the driver.
A larger, central 7.0in touchscreen, flanked by touch-sensitive shortcut buttons, operates the infotainment system. The touchscreen is generally responsive and you can use pinch and swipe gestures like you can on your smartphone. It hesitates at times, though, and the graphics on models equipped with sat-nav aren't as slick as those in the Volkswagen Golf or Hyundai Ioniq, for example. There's no Android Auto or Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring, either.
It's easy to find a comfortable position in the driver's seat, and the latest Prius offers greater support in corners than previous models. However, the steering wheel could use a little more range in terms of both vertical and horizontal adjustment. There's a great view of the road ahead, but the split rear windscreen seriously compromises the rearward view.