Fun with our rental car – a Toyota Prius hybrid

Having the rental car buggered up last night turned out pretty well as when we arrived at the airport this morning to pick up a little compact from Alamo, the lady suggested if it was the best fuel economy we were after, they had a Toyota Prius hybrid available. It was $300 more than the compact, but some quick maths on estimated gas mileage (they quoted 60mpg) would work out worth it over the next 5 weeks or so.

Toyota Prius

The dash is pretty cool as it has a touch screen to handle the audio system, climate controls, etc. and shows some neat effects detailing how + when the electric motor is being charged and when it’s being used alongside or in replacement of the standard petrol engine. We put on around 280 miles on our way down from Seattle, and averaged 50.2 miles per gallon. That’s pretty damn good as an average over that kind of distance!

Prius dash

We’ve still got about half a tank of gas left, and I’m guessing it’s about a 10/11 gallon tank, so already it’s working out quite nicely! It’s really smooth, though there definately seems a very subtle jolt when the electric motor is engaged/disengaged.

Other than a little traffic coming through Portland, the drive from Seattle down to Eugene, Oregon was pretty smooth and easy. Very scenic with large wooded areas and mountain views down through Washington. Bit of a shame we’ve had to plow through in a day, but tomorrow we’re heading into the Cascade Range and Crater Lake National Park, and on our way back up to Seattle we can spend some more time checking things out, especially in Washington.


Senior Content Development for Microsoft writing about Azure virtual machines. Occasionally I play video games.

Posted in cars, road trip
3 comments on “Fun with our rental car – a Toyota Prius hybrid
  1. Kacey Green says:
    Internet Explorer 7.0 Windows Vista

    11.9 gallon tank.
    I’m glad you enjoyed it.
    50.1 is great for a new hybrid driver. Most new drivers I’ve heard from get about 39-45 MPG without practice or training. Good Job!
    60 MPG can be achieved with a bit of work.

  2. fouldsy says:
    Mozilla Firefox Mac OS

    Well, it’s been a month now and we still never dropped below 50mpg over the course of a whole tank. That’s also considering the air con was on pretty much permanently! I’ve been really impressed with it’s performance considering we’ve stuck on 6,000 miles in a little over a month, and apart from it struggling to get the right gear pulling away up a hill in Yosemite (solved simply by stopping and re-starting the car), it’s never missed a beat.

    Simple maths based on the extra mileage we’ve got over the distance we covered shows approx $250 saved in gas, and after contacting Alamo a couple of days to re-confirm our details after 28 days of rental, renting the Prius only worked out around $190 more than getting the standard compact so it’s definately a winner 🙂

    I’m sure 60mpg would be possible with a very gentle right foot and not going up down mountains a few thousand feet high all day long, but even at 50mpg in a car packed with luggage, it’s no mean feat!

  3. Kacey Green says:
    Internet Explorer 7.0 Windows Vista

    Nice! Excellent work. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


About Me

Iain Foulds, 33 years old. Originally from England, now living in Seattle. I currently work as a Senior Content Developer for Microsoft writing about Azure VMs. Gamer. Very passionate about photography. Comments and opinions expressed here are my own. More...