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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