2020 Prius Prime on a trail carrying outdoor sporting goods

What’s the difference between Prius and Prius Prime?

Toyota Prius and Prius Prime: What’s the Difference?

Toyota is one of the forerunners of the hybrid vehicle movement. The Prius itself is one of the most recognizable hybrid vehicles. So, when Toyota has another vehicle in the Prius lineup called the Prius Prime, is it a completely different vehicle? Is it just a trim?

What’s the difference between the Prius and the Prius Prime?

View Our New Prius Selection

2020 Prius Prime at a charging stationThe Main Difference

The Prius is a traditional hybrid; the Prius Prime is a PHEV. A traditional hybrid uses regenerative charging, stop-and-start technology, and electric motors to negate much of the fuel economy loss that happens while a vehicle idles and accelerates. A PHEV is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that utilizes the same techniques as a traditional hybrid, but can also be plugged in to extend battery-only operation.

Fuel Economy

The Prius AWD-e system is designed to provide traction up to 43 mph while retaining 50 mpg. Those are great numbers, especially when it comes to city driving. The Prius Prime has an EV driving range of 25 miles. After that juice is used up, it will operate as a regular hybrid at an EPA-estimated 54 mpg. The Prius Prime also has multiple driving modes, like the EV Auto Mode that intelligently selects between fully electric and hybrid operation.


The Prius has both an available 11.6-inch display and available heads-up display that projects important drive info onto your windshield. The Prius and Prius Prime has Qi-compatible wireless smartphone charging, Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa compatibility, and an available 10-speaker JBL premium audio system.

 Interested in the Toyota Prius?

Schedule a time to come test drive one at Arlington Toyota. If you have any questions regarding Toyota hybrids or any other Toyota product, feel free to give us a call or send us a message. We’re always happy to chat.