Performance & drive
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
The Toyota Prius Plug-in's extra battery capacity compared with a regular hybrid, combined with a modified gearbox, allows the car to use its two electric motors to drive the car forwards. It takes off the instant you flex your right foot and builds speed quickly. That said, while electric-only mode feels peppy around town, it’s rather sluggish getting up to motorway speeds.
When the 1.8-litre petrol engine is called into action (to save battery charge or when if the battery is depleted, for example), it starts without sending too much vibration through the steering wheel and is relatively quiet.
As for the rest of the Prius Plug-in driving experience, the steering, while not brimming with feedback, is precise for this sort of vehicle. The ride is a touch on the fidgety side at speed compared with the Octavia iV and the M Sport Pro version of the BMW 330e with its adaptive suspension.
Around town, severe potholes will thump through the base of your seat. The Prius Plug-in doesn't grip the road as tenaciously in corners as some of its rivals, and its economy-focused tyres filter too much noise into the car.