Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
Pros: The visual display of engine motor usage
Cons: isn't anything I don't like about it
Advice: This type of car can really get the USA off foreign oil and it is fun to driveI found the Prius to have extremely good handling characteristics and the seating (roomy) rivals the Mark VII I was driving. I love the instrument panel.
Pros: I purchased primarily for low emissions
Cons: Tough question. OK
Advice: For up to 4 1/2 peopleI used to drive a 1960's era Mercedes, and thought it was just about the perfect vehicle. The Prius changed my mind. Longest road trip to date 3500 miles in a week - enjoyed it all, even west Texas!. At highway speeds at or below 75 mph, 45 mpg is typical. The 2001 model sold in US did not offer cruise control; installed the OEM part myself with no difficulties. 'Water-clear' oil after 2000 mi (low duty cycle on the gas engine) and negligible brake pad wear after 28000 mi (regenerative braking) suggest long-term maintenance costs will be low in areas I have not seen addressed in published reviews. As to those, they seem to underrate its performance. Drive it yourself.