Toyota has unveiled the latest Prius at an event on the eve of the 2022 Los Angeles Auto Show, and it says the model is the most fuel-efficient entry in the lineup so far. The company has designed the 2023 Prius, which will come in LE, XLE and Limited grades, with a lower center of gravity, wider stance and a lower driving position. Its roofline is 2 inches lower than its predecessor, and it’s an inch wider at the rear. Toyota was clearly going for a more sporty, modern look, aided by larger wheels on the XLE and Limited variants.
Of course, the new Prius also comes with performance improvements. It uses Toyota’s 5th generation hybrid powertrain and a new lithium-ion battery, which offers a 15 percent increase in output compared to the lineup’s older nickel metal battery technology. That means the company was able to develop a smaller and lighter battery for the vehicle without compromising its performance. But since the Prius is still a hybrid and doesn’t rely solely on electricity for power, Toyota has also equipped it with a larger two-liter gas engine.
The automaker says front-wheel drive variants have an output of 194 horsepower and can go from 0 to 60 mph in 7.2 seconds, faster than the outgoing FWD vehicles’ 9.8 seconds. All-wheel drive models have an output of 196 horsepower and are capable of accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 7 seconds. All models have three drive modes: Eco, which increases fuel economy, and Power and Sport modes, which increase throttle responsiveness.
Other features include half a dozen USB-C ports and a Toyota Audio multimedia system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Toyota’s connected service Drive Connect also gives owners access to an intelligent assistant that can follow voice-activated commands and cloud navigation, which can download the latest available map, traffic and routing information from the cloud. And if drivers are having a really tough time finding their way to their next destination, they can also use the Destination Assist feature to speak to a live agent at any time of the day.
To assist the driver, the vehicle has a blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert, as well as front and rear parking assist with automatic braking on all variants. The Limited version has a panoramic view monitor that provides a live 360-degree view around the vehicle and a hands-free system that can help drivers parallel park or back into a parking space.
Additionally, the 2023 Prius will come with the latest version of Toyota’s Safety Sense generation, which enables a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, steering assist and lane departure alert with cruise control. A new addition to the feature and to the Prius overall is active driving assistance that enables gentle braking in turns or when a vehicle, pedestrian or cyclist is moving in front of the vehicle.
Toyota has yet to announce pricing and availability for the 2023 Prius, but it promises to make another announcement with details before the end of the year.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission. All prices correct at time of publication.