2012 Toyota Prius C Manual Leaked: Here’s What It Tells Us

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2012 Toyota Prius C launch, Detroit Auto Show

2012 Toyota Prius C launch, Detroit Auto Show

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You’d think after scans of the complete Japanese-specification 2012 Toyota Prius C brochure leaked onto the Internet, Toyota would be a little more careful about information surrounding its upcoming subcompact hybrid. 

But a few days ago popular Prius fansite PriusChat discovered that the entire 525-page Owner’s Manual for the 2012 Prius C had been uploaded in error to Toyota’s website. 

Of course, they had to take a look, and so did we.

We’ve spent a few hours reading it from cover-to-cover, and here’s what we’ve learned about Toyota’s latest addition to the Prius Family. 

9.5 Gallon Fuel Tank, Smaller Hybrid Battery

In the manual, the 2012 Prius C is listed as having a 9.5 gallon fuel tank, good for a range of between 440 and 503 miles per tank of gasoline depending on driving conditions. 

That’s a little smaller than the 11.9 gallon fuel capacity of the 2012 Prius hatchback, but given the Prius C is also a lot smaller, it should offer a similar driving distance between fill-ups as its larger brother.

2012 Toyota Prius C launch, Detroit Auto Show

2012 Toyota Prius C launch, Detroit Auto Show

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The Prius C also uses a smaller, lower voltage hybrid battery pack. Instead of the 201.6-volt, 1.3 kilowatt-hour battery pack found in the 2012 Prius hatchback, the Prius C has a 144-volt, 936 watt-hour battery pack. 

According to Toyota, this should give the Prius C an electric-only range of around 1.3 miles at speeds of under 25 mph, depending on conditions. 

Like previous generation Priuses, the Prius C will use a nickel-metal hydride battery pack rather than the lithium-ion battery pack found in the 2012 Prius Plug-in Hybrid.

It Will Have A Spare Tire

Toyota Prius C Manual Pages

Toyota Prius C Manual Pages

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Despite its smaller dimensions -- almost two feet shorter than the 2012 Prius hatchback -- the 2012 Prius C will include a space-saver emergency tire.

Given the number of subcompact and green cars on the market today which are sold with emergency tire sealant rather than a spare wheel, not to mention the number of drivers who won’t buy a car unless it has a spare tire, we think Toyota has made the right choice. 

Talking of tires, the Prius C manual lists two different tire and wheel sizes available, presumably depending on trim level: 15 inch wheels with 175/65 tires; and 16 inch wheels with 195/50 tires. 

Keyless Entry, Immobilizers Won’t Be Standard On Base Level

Despite what we learned in Detroit, the sub-$19,000 base-level Prius won’t come with remote keyless entry as standard.

At least, that’s what the manual implies, with sections devoted to cars without a smart key system.

Cars with a smart-key system will operate in a similar way to the 2012 Toyota Prius, with a dash-mounted power switch and smart-entry front doors and tailgate. 

Cars without the smart-key system will instead use a traditional steering-column ignition barrel. Much more simplistic, the manual key will also operate the steering wheel lock. 

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Comments (6)
  1. No cruise control and lack of 60/40 seats on base model may sway me back to a Honda Fit. The fit includes these on the base model and the ability to fold the back seat bottoms up. At 1st blush the Prius C seemed perfect but not now. I assume the under $19K will translate to $18,999. Base auto fit is $16,500....

  2. Not sure about the Prius C, because I haven't seen one yet, but my sister-in-law got a Fit and that is one nice little vehicle.

    Of course if you do a lot of city driving, the gasoline savings on the Prius C is worth considering assuming the financial end is your primary motivator. Add in a little additional benefit to everyone's lungs and perhaps the Prius C is worth the added cost.

  3. Seems overly complicated. I don't own a second generation Honda Insight, but from what I have seen, it seems to be a cleaner, simpler design. The Prius C is cooling a bit for me, but I would still like to test drive one.

  4. Both HSD and IMA are simple in different ways:
    - IMA adds the motor inline with the engine.
    - HSD uses a simple planetary gearset to combine engine and motor and is single-geared so eliminates the conventional transmission.

  5. The design and load parameters are keeping within the mission of the car...a good city car with long range highway capabilities, excellent mileage, proven technology, quality and a low price.

    If you need more, why bother with negative comments about a simply stunning solution from Toyota?

  6. It has Remote Keyless Entry, but not Smart Key as standard. Page 31 makes it obvious.

    Don't worry, it seems that other writers have made the same mistake.

Commenting is closed for old articles.

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