Toyota Prius running costs

Fourth-generation Toyota Prius offers shoestring running costs as hybrid powertrain maximises efficiency intelligently

Insurance group Warranty Service intervals 2018/19 company car cost (20%/40%)
14E 60 months / 100,000 miles 12 months / 10,000 miles £915.61 / £1,831.22

As we’ve mentioned, there are many options to rival the Toyota Prius, but it’s the Hyundai Ioniq that matches it most closely. This is true of the respective ranges’ pricing structures as well.

While the Hyundai Ioniq range starts at a cheaper price point (around £2,700 less) there’s more choice in the Prius line-up, with four trim levels to the Hyundai’s three.

As the regular hybrid Prius isn’t a plug-in car it’s not eligible for the UK Government grant, while with CO2 emissions from 78g/km it also comes in just above the current 75g/km CO2 threshold for London Congestion Charge exemption.

But that shouldn’t put you off, as the running costs are incredibly affordable. Based on our sister title Auto Express’s real-world fuel economy for the Prius you should expect to spend just over £1,000 per year on fuel (based on an average of 12,000 miles per year). That’s hardly anything, as even an efficient petrol supermini would cost you at least £500 a year more in fuel.

If you’ll be running a Prius as a company car then those low CO2 emissions will help keep running costs down too. Taking our chosen trim – Business Edition Plus (but on 15-inch alloys to maximise its low CO2 potential) – the Toyota falls into the 19% BiK class. This means a higher rate taxpayer will have to contribute just £2,009 per year to The Treasury to run one, which is cheap indeed.

Toyota Prius insurance group

All Toyota Priuses fall into group 14 when it comes to the car’s insurance rating, regardless of spec.

Of course, as with any car what you’ll pay in insurance premiums will depend on your circumstances – factors like where you live, whether you have points on your licence and how much driving experience you have. However, to give an indication of how much you should expect to pay, our sample middle-aged driver with three points on their licence was quoted around £550 per year fully comprehensive.

Warranty

As we’ve mentioned above, Toyota’s five-year/100,000-mile warranty package extends to the Prius, so there’s plenty of peace of mind for buyers.

Even used examples of this fourth-generation car will have half the balance of coverage given the Prius hit the market in 2015.

Servicing

With 206 dealers nationwide it’ll be easy to get your Prius serviced – and we’d recommend you go to a main dealer as being serviced by an official Toyota franchise means you’ll keep the extensive warranty cover on the hybrid system components and the battery pack.

Service intervals are every one year or 10,000 miles and alternative between interval and major services. Expect to pay around £169 for the former and £219 for the latter.

Road tax

Even a top-spec fully optioned Prius won’t take you near the £310 VED premium for cars costing more than £40,000, so given the Toyota is an alternatively fuelled vehicle in the eyes of the government, you’ll only pay £130 per year road tax.

First year VED on the Prius will be affordable too. No matter whether you go for a car with 15-inch or 17-inch wheels, you’ll pay £95 road tax for the first year.

Depreciation

All Priuses resist depreciation relatively well according to our experts, highlighting that this economical, reliable car is sought after even on the second-hand market. You shouldn’t have much trouble selling one on.

However, it’s no surprise it’s the middle and slightly lower-spec trim levels that hold onto their money slightly better than the pricier but better equipped models.

We’ll focus on our chosen Business Edition Plus model with 15-inch wheels to give an indication of depreciation over a typical three-year/36,000-mile ownership period. This is one of the stronger models in the line-up.

Our experts predict the Prius will retain 49.8% of its value after this period, which means it’ll shed a respectable £13,351 and therefore be worth £13,234. However, a point to note, the Prius’s predicted depreciation figures lag one or two per cent behind the cheaper Ioniq across the range.