2020 Toyota Prius AWD Hybrid XLE

Due to the coronavirus situation, the Prius was dropped off in the Pirate Radio parking lot, and thereafter the reviewer phoned in for commentary about the vehicle – George “Elvis” Gray and Bob “Bullet” Bernd were on hand in the studio:

Supersonic red paint with black SofTex seating for 5 and heated front buckets – Weighs 3,075 lbs. and is 180” long – 65.5 cubic ft. of cargo space with the back seat folded down – 15” bright finish aluminum wheels and 195/65R15 Bridgestone all season radial tires   Pushbutton start, power seats, head up color display, self leveling headlamps, and heated steering wheel   12.3” infotainment screen and navigation system   backup camera, and 8 speaker XM/AM/FM Toyota/Entune premium sound system – Adaptive cruise control, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability, lane change alert, rear cross traffic alert, and blind spot warning – 1.8 liter, 121 horsepower hybrid 4 cylinder engine with continuously variable automatic transmission and all wheel drive  traction until 43 mph – $33,021.00  list price – built in Toyota, Aichi, Japan – Fuel economy (Combined – 48 mpg) (Highway – 48 mpg) (City – 52 mpg) – (11.3 gallon tank with 542 mi.range)

2020 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (Hybrid) AWD Crossover

The Mitsubishi was driven to Pirate Radio for an analysis by the DJ’s, George “Elvis” Gray and Matt “the Big Kahuna” Arguello:

Pearl White metallic paint with Black leather diamond quilted seating for 5 (2 heated) – Weighs 3,582 lbs. –  184.8” long/105.1” wheelbase – 30.4 cubic ft. of cargo space behind rear rear split fold-down seat – 18” two tone alloy spoke wheels and 225/55R18 all season tires – Pushbutton start, heated steering wheel and tilting/sliding moon roof – LED daytime running lights and headlights plus 8” infotainment screen and navigation system – Multi-view camera system, 4G LTE WiFi hotspot, XM/AM/FM Mitsubishi premium sound system – Backup camera, radar cruise control, tilt wheel, Apple CarPlay and Android auto capability, lane tracking assist, forward collision mitigation, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot warning, and rear cross traffic warning – 2.0 liter, 117 horsepower hybrid four cylinder engine with one speed automatic transmission, paddle shifters, and all wheel drive – $43,600.00  list price           Built in Okazaki, Japan – 74 mpg combined city/highway mileage – 25 combined mpg without battery power – 11.3 gallon tank and 357 miles of range 


2019 Honda Insight FWD Touring Sedan

The Honda hybrid was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) for an analysis by the DJ’s, Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello and George “Elvis” Gray:

Front wheel drive – Cosmic Blue metallic paint with Ivory leather seating – 5 passenger – 106.3” wheelbase – 184” long – Weighs 2,987 lbs. – 17”, Sport black/silver painted ten-spoke aluminum alloy wheels – LED daytime running lights and 8” infotainment center – Backup camera, navigation, adaptive cruise control, tilt wheel, and Bluetooth capability – Moonroof – Remote engine starter – AM/AM/FM premium 10 speaker stereo – 1.5 liter, 151 horsepower gasoline/electric 4 cylinder engine with continuously variable automatic transmission – zero to 60 in 9 seconds – $28,985.00  list price           Built in Greensburg, Indiana – 477  miles of range, 45 mpg highway/51 mpg city/48 combined – 10.6 gallon tank

2017 Lexus NX-300h Hybrid AWD 5-Door SUV

The Lexus was driven to Pirate Radio (FM 104.7) for an analysis by the DJ’s, Matt “Big Kahuna” Arguello and George “Elvis” Gray.  Listen to the discussion:

Autumn Shimmer (brown metallic) clear coat paint – Heated black leather buckets – seats 5 – 10.3” touchscreen, with navigation – Weighs 4,180 lbs. – 182.6” long – 2.5 liter four cylinder hybrid power plant, 194 horsepower – 225/60r18 all season tires with vortex-styled alloy wheels – Ten speaker Lexus premium sound system – Power rear tailgate, 18 cubic ft. cargo space, folding rear seat – Continuously variable automatic transmission and all-wheel drive – Moonroof and computer touchpad on console – $50,433.00 Window Sticker – 30 MPG on the highway – 31 MPG combined rating – 33 MPG city.  14.8 gallon tank – regular unleaded fuel

Made in Miyawaka, Fukuoka, Japan

2017 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Limited FWD Sedan

The Toyota Avalon was driven to Pirate Radio for an analysis by DJ’s George Gray and Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello during the Morning Show.  Listen in:

Parisian Night Pearl blue metallic paint with black interior  – 5 passenger – 195” long like a Chevy Impala or Ford Taurus – Power black heated and air conditioned leather bucket seats and heated second row seating – 8” Touchscreen with navigation – XM radio and  premium 11 speaker JBL “cabin surround” stereo – Pushbutton start and power rear window shade – 2.5 liter four with 200 system (gas and electric) horsepower – CVT Automatic transmission –  3 driving modes – Backup camera, lane departure warning, heated steering wheel, radar cruise control, and blind spot monitor – 17”  aluminum alloy wheels – $43,639.00  list price – 40 MPG combined mileage, 40 city, and 39 highway – Built in Georgetown, Kentucky

2017 BMW i3 All-Electric Sedan with Range Extender

The BMW was taken to Pirate Radio for analysis by George Gray and Matt Arguello during the Morning Show.  Listen…….

Mineral Grey charcoal metallic paint – Heated Tera (brown) leather buckets – Four passenger seating with rear coach doors – 6.5” touchscreen w/navigation – Weighs 2,899 lbs. – Harman/Kardon premium stereo – All-electric power – 170 horsepower Torque is 184 lb. ft. – two cylinder gas “range extender”, 650cc engine – Rear wheel drive – Backup camera – $54,695.00 Window Sticker – 111 MPGe on the highway – 35 MPG combined rating – 2.4 gallon tank – 97 miles of all-electric range – 83 miles range on gas – Made in Leipzig, Germany


2017 Toyota Prius Prime Advanced Plug-In Hybrid Sedan

As discussed on Pirate Radio 104.7 FM – Myself/George Gray/Matt Arguello

Titanium Glow silver metallic paint – Heated black SofTex leatherette buckets – 4 passenger seating – 11.6” touchscreen – Rear seat tablet holder – Radar cruise control – Weighs 3,375 lbs. – JBL ten speaker stereo – Pushbutton start & Quad-LED headlamps and LED fog lamps – 1.8 liter 121 hybrid system horsepower – torque is 105 lb. ft. – CVT automatic transmission and front-wheel drive – Backup camera – $36,305.00 Window Sticker – 133 MPGe on the highway – 54 MPG combined rating – 11.3 gallon tank  (640 miles of range)

2017 Toyota Prius Four Hybrid Touring Sedan

The blue Prius Four (top of the line) was taken to Pirate Radio FM 104.7 for analysis by DJ’s George Gray and Matt Arguello:

I drove this Prius to Denver twice to attend the Denver Auto Show, and was impressed by the handling and maneuverability of this unit in congested, mid-day downtown traffic and congestion.  I can’t imagine another vehicle doing a superior job.

Blue Crush metallic – Gray Softex heated buckets – 5 passenger – 7” touchscreen – Radar cruise control – Keyless entry/blindspot monitor – Halogen headlights, Daytime running lights, LED taillights – JBL 6 speaker Greenedge sound stereo – Backup camera and navigation – 95 horsepower 1.8 liter cylinder gas and electric drive train – CVT Automatic transmission and front-wheel drive –  $34,181.00 – 54 MPG city , 52 MPG combined 50 MPG highway –  Weighs 3,080 lbs./27.4 cubic ft. of cargo space – 17” Five spoke wheels with LRR P215/45R17 tires

2016 Toyota Prius Four Touring Liftback

20161013_181426_hdrThe fancy Toyota Prius Four was taken to Pirate Radio – Greeley, CO (FM 104.7) to show off to the Morning Show guys, George Gray and Matt Arguello:


 When Takeshi Uchiyamada, a top Toyota manager, was presented in 1995 with the task of developing a new hybrid automobile within two years, he was shocked and in need of inspiration.  He found it by reading, among other things, the accounts of America’s landing of a man on the moon during the 1960’s – both his boss, Toyota president Hiroshi Okuda, and U.S. president John F. Kennedy, had set forth a goal and a timetable for a project for which the technology to complete it did not exist.

Both goals were met, and the Toyota Prius was born in Japan on October 14th, 1997.  In America, the time came to take Prius orders in June of 2000 with a website that immediately lit up with orders, pleasing anxious Toyota executives.  Now global sales of the Prius family of vehicles have reached 5.7 million.

The 2016 Toyota Prius is the first year of the fourth generation of Prii, and I recently tested one for a week.  Keeping up with an industry trend, Toyota has managed to effect fuel economy improvements with each successive generation of the Prius.  The original Prius’ 40 mpg combined mileage rating was increased in to 45 mpg in 2004 by installing all-electric air conditioning and in 2009 an electric water pump and larger engine were incorporated.  Each successive model featured more aerodynamic styling, reducing the drag coefficient to the 2016’s .24 Cd.  My test Prius had the larger, 1.8 liter, four cylinder gasoline engine and two electric motor/generators incorporated in the power train, bringing the total hybrid system net horsepower to 166, with a 50 mpg combined EPA mileage rating.  I was thoroughly satisfied with the driveability, performance, and economy (I observed 51 mpg) of this sedan during my time with it.

The front-wheel drive Prius is surprisingly roomy (it seats five) and comfortable, with two-tone SofTex seats, and 21.6 cubic feet of luggage space.  This Prius was base-priced at $30,005.00, and freight and technology package brought the total to $35,704.00.  That tech package provided hard-disk navigation with 6.1” screen, JBL sound system with MP3 connection, Entune (with smartphone integration), HD/satellite radio, Bluetooth, back-up camera, adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, proximity keyless entry, and head-up windshield speedometer display. The exterior of the car included blue-accent car badges, rear spoiler, LED headlamps, front fog lamps, 17” alloy wheels, and P215/45R17 all-season radials.20161013_175220_hdr

I recommend the 2014 Prius sedan as a solid performer and investment.  Nonetheless, I will be looking forward to next year’s 2015, fourth generation Prius that will reportedly deliver a ten percent increase in fuel economy, to 55 mpg.  It will be completely restyled with a reduction in drag, and all-wheel drive is rumored to be an option.