I’m becoming obsessed, as is often my wont, with the Prius. I visit the Prius website almost daily, scour the news for articles, google the web for mentions in other blogs and online sources, carry around my printed brochure, etc.
Today, for example, Gizmodo (one of my regular reads, linked from the “interesting & cool” section in the right column), “the gadgets weblog,” included an item about the “gadgety new Prius.”
Earlier this week, Motor Trend published a very positive article. Interestingly the only slightly negative comment by the reviewer was that “a bit more of a traditional look might have been more appealing. The exterior design is one of the few things I don’t like about the new Prius.” Conversely, I think that the sleek aerodynamic styling of the 2004 model adds significantly to its appeal.
In an article entitled “Leaner, Meaner and Greener,” the Washington Post also reviewed the Prius this past Sunday, noting that:
First impressions were bad. The cues were wrong.
The Smart Entry ignition key wasn’t a key. It was a square electronic fob inserted into a dashboard slot — something more useful for punching a time clock than starting a car.
I pushed the power button but felt no life. I looked for the gearshift lever but found a joystick instead. It was my first hour in the 2004 Toyota Prius gas-electric sedan. I didn’t like it. But my distaste was short-lived.
The joystick became a joy, the easiest transmission-selection device I’ve ever used.
The reviewer went on to summarize that “[t]he 2004 Prius goes to the top of my list for best city cars. It has a practically unbeatable combination of good mileage, low emissions, power and scootability.”
Both the Post article and a feature in GEICO’s quarterly magazine, however, noted that one may need to drive more defensively in a Prius, because it’s so quiet in battery-mode (as when cruising a parking lot, or coming out of a garage) that pedestrians don’t hear it coming.
I’ve also become a bit of a Prius evangelist (similar to my earlier experiences evangelizing the Macintosh and the Saturn, and my current experience singing the praises of TiVo to everyone I know); in addition to my boss, who ended up placing her order for one even before I did, I’ve talked several other people at work into strongly considering the Prius.
Hallelujah, brothers and sisters! Release yourselves from the shackles of the gas pump! Breathe deeply of the clean air of Prius! Let me hear you shout!