Ten years ago if you had told a Toyota engineer or executive that the Prius would be entering its third generation as a vehicle they probably would have laughed at you. While it might be well-known that U.S. automakers mocked Toyota and their "crazy" hybrid, secretly the folks at Toyota also though it would never catch on.
But it did.
Unfortunately the design of the 2010 Prius is mostly indistinguishable from the '09 model, which is a shame because Toyota has done a lot to improve the car. In fact, Toyota is taking a big step with this third-gen platform, in an attempt at moving it from a niche market science project to a mainstream auto.
To do this, the 2010 Prius has two very different sides to it. In order to appeal to a larger audience Toyota is making it easier to use while offering plenty of high-tech gadgets that will draw in up-market customers. And to keep the interest of past Prius owners and environmentally responsible folks, the 2010 Prius gets more fuel economy than ever.
More: 2010 Toyota Prius: First Drive