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2012 Toyota Prius c Gets 53 MPG and It's Affordable

February 9, 2012

The all-new 2012 Toyota Prius c will be hitting dealer showrooms next month. With a 53 mpg fuel rating (the highest for any non-plugin vehicle), there are lots of interested shoppers

And with a starting price of less than $19,000, some are wondering if the Prius c might actually be the most affordable car in its class - despite the added cost of its hybrid engine.

First, it's important to note that the c comes standard with automatic transmission, power windows and locks, remote entry, USB input, Bluetooth, and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel. Most other cars in the sub-compact class need hundreds or even thousands of dollars in additional options to match the Prius c's base offering.

When compared apples to apples, the Prius c actually comes in second place for affordability over a 5 year period. The Kicking Tires blog computed all the numbers.

Prius C Comparison

As an added bonus, the resale value of hybrids usually hold up well, so the Prius c will probably have lower depreciation costs as well.

Despite a higher initial price, the Prius c should definitely be on your consideration list. But wait at least several months before buying one - I expect demand to be extremely high at first, which will make it very difficult to negotiate any deals.

My Recommendation for Car Shoppers

TrueCar No-Haggle, Edmunds Price Promise, and 1-800 Car Show are the quickest way to see the lowest car prices in your area. These sites show you no-haggle prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually really good. This should be the first step you take when negotiating your car price. Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.

California Residents - Important:

There is a new online car buying service called Roadster, available only to California residents, which I highly recommend you try - especially if you hate the stress of haggling with a car salesman. They provide an expert concierge who negotiates the price of the car and delivers it to your home with zero hassle - you never have to interact with a dealership. Here is my in-depth review of Roadster and why I recommend it.

- Gregg Fidan

Gregg Fidan

About: Gregg Fidan


Gregg Fidan + is the founder of RealCarTips. After being ripped off on his first car purchase, he devoted several years to figuring out the best ways to avoid scams and negotiate the best car deals. He has written hundreds of articles on the subject of car buying and taught thousands of car shoppers how to get the best deals.

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