My other car is in the body shop to replace its front bumper. Casualty of parking downtown. For a rental, Hertz offered me a chance to drive the Toyota Prius. Why not? This is a quick review of this car. It drives very nicely. I cannot tell the difference under normal driving, city and highway. I have not put padal to the metal on this thing yet, but for normal driving it is as nice as the GS. From what I can gather by watching the adictive energy display, the car will use the electric motor in low speed driving. That means parking, searching for parking space in a parking lot, etc. Save gas. During start up acceleration, it seems to start with the electric motor as well, then the gas engine kicks in. On normal driving the engine charges the batteries. When slowing down, esp when the brakes are applied, energy is fed back (recharging) to the batteries.
One thing about driving this thing -- the Energy LCD display is adictive to watch. Driving is now a little like a video game. Dangerous.
The 'gear/shifting' is different in this car then a "normal" car. I think they make it a little unnecessarily different. Maybe they want the owners to feel special. But it does prevent anyone unfamiliar with this car to drive it. I think it is a bad idea.