Welcome to the Prius Club of Queensland. Please visit our Discussion Forum for the latest information on Club Activities, and to get answers to any questions you may have about the Prius experience.

New owners are most welcome to join the Club.

The Future of Electric Cars

Posted by Greg on Wed 22-Jun-2011

This presentation was kindly made available to us by the Prius Club of San Diego (USA). It illustrates the progress that is being made by manufacturers around the world to develop hybrid and pure electric vehicles.

The availability and pricing information relates to the USA, but units have been converted to metric where appropriate. Some of these vehicles are expected to be available in Australia in the near future.

There are 29 slides in all. Click on any slide to move to the next slide, or the slide will change automatically in 20 seconds.

A static slide version of this presentation is available here.


Prius price reduction in Australia

Posted by John on Sat 9-Apr-2011

Toyota Australia has reduced pricing on the Prius range by 18% as of Friday 8th April. This re-positions the range a little more competitively in the market, and importantly differentiates it from the just-released Lexus CT 200h Hybrid which also uses the Prius drivetrain.

The new list price for a Base model is $34,990 plus on-road costs, while an I-tech now costs $45,990 plus on-road costs. Toyota is also offering a 3.9% finance rate for new 2010 plated Prius models.

Unfortunately, due to the power restrictions and damage to component manufacturing factories in Japan as a result of the horrific disasters that have happened there recently, Toyota production lines are not working and are not expected to resume production for some time. Therefore, new car stock out of Japan has stopped shipping, and only stock already in Australia can be delivered, with dealers taking orders on an open-ended delivery date basis. There are no new Prius I-techs available in Australia for example (but quite a few Base models), with no new stock expected before August at the earliest. Toyota dealers (and also any other Japanese car dealers) could be in for a lean time, as even Australian-built Toyotas use some parts sourced from Japan. Toyota will obviously source new stock from other Toyota plants world-wide which have the capacity and components to try and cover the shortfall where possible, but expect inevitable delays.

New Prius V model shown officially

Posted by John on Tue 22-Feb-2011

Toyota US has revealed a new member of the Prius family to go into production late this year. Called the Prius V, it is a larger-bodied version of the Generation 3 Prius hatch…..but with a number of improvements apart from the increased carrying capacity.

While the drivetrain, engine and most mechanicals are identical to the Hatch, major changes have been made to the interior, and most exterior panels. Even the standard alloy wheels change from 15″ to 16″ diameter, with the 17″ size remaining an optional extra. The interior has had a major redesign, with the wide instrument panel of the hatch being replaced by a compact central design. The console bridge connecting the dashboard with the centre console has gone, with the mode control buttons now residing in the centre armrest, and the drive selector moving to a position in the centre dash closer to the steering wheel (which remains the same as before). The rear seat backrests now recline (so expect snoring from rear seat passengers), and the roof now features twin moonroofs with individual sliding covers. Externally, most panels have been modified, with the side bodyline being lowered. At the front, the foglights have been relocated to the lower grille, and sharper, flatter lines have been introduced. The new luggage space has been increased by 50%, with a minimal increase in overall body width and length. Fuel economy has suffered a small penalty due to the increased weight, but the Prius V still remains one of the most fuel-efficient vehicles on the market.

No indication yet if the Prius V will be brought in to Australia.

The Plug-in Prius continues in final consumer testing in most countries, and is expected to go on sale in selected areas in 2012. Another concept Hybrid member of the Prius family, the Prius C, a smaller, sporty car, will also go on sale in 2012.

Prius goes Plural

Posted by Greg on Mon 21-Feb-2011

In January 2011, Toyota invited Prius owners and fans to vote on what the plural of Prius should be. The results of the poll were announced on 20th February 2011.

Result of the vote:

The Vote - the plural of Prius is Prii

Border Ranges Trip

Posted by Greg on Tue 12-Oct-2010

Flutterbies Cottage Cafe, TyalgumOn a wet Saturday morning in October, 14 club members in 7 vehicles assembled at the BP Service Centre near Beenleigh for a trip to the Border Ranges surrounding Mt. Warning. The plan was to explore the volcanic caldera formed when the Wollumbin volcano erupted some 23 million years ago. The erosion caldera is easily visible around the area and forms the rim of the Tweed Valley. Mt. Warning was formed from the volcanic plug remnant at the centre of the ancient volcano. The crater itself is the biggest in the southern hemisphere.

We proceeded in formation down the Gold Coast Highway to Nerang, then travelled along the Numinbah Valley Road past the Hinze Dam to Natural Bridge where we stopped for a break. Most opted to take the 200m walk down to the rock bridge, where a flood of water was pouring over the rocks as a result of the recent rains. Crossing the border into NSW we proceeded to Chillingham then headed west to Tyalgum in the heart of the Caldera. A great lunch awaited us there at Flutterbies Cottage Cafe, with the volcanic rim looming all around the town.

Mt Warning (Wollumbin)After a relaxed lunch we headed east again, with Mt. Warning ahead. We passed north of the mountain, turned south and exited the main road into the Mt. Warning national park. Travelling through rain forest filled with gigantic ferns for about 7km, we noted numerous precariously-balanced rock towers in the creek running through the park, apparently something of a local tradition. It was cold and rainy when we reached the parking area with the mountain peak looming overhead. We met some brave souls who had just returned from the 8km trek to the summit, but our group limited themselves to the short 150m walk up to the Lyre Bird Lookout.

We then headed for Kyogle to freshen up at the modern Country Inn before dinner at the Commercial Hotel. A trivia quiz followed dinner, and we discovered that Rob and Lindy knew far more useless facts than the rest of us.

Country Inn, KyogleAfter an enjoyable hot breakfast on Sunday morning we departed Kyogle to the north-west in misty light rain and travelled up the Lions Road, a privately financed road that was built by Lions Clubs in the area to provide a shortcut to Beaudesert. The road is fully sealed but is quite narrow in places and features a number of single-lane wooden bridges which required cautious driving. The road winds through farmland and rainforest towards a gap in the range marking the Queensland border. Before crossing back into Qld, we stopped at a lookout to view the amazing spiral loop in the Brisbane-Sydney railway line. Regrettably it was quite windy with heavy rain so our appreciation of this engineering feat and the surrounding scenery was quite brief.

Mt Warning National ParkWe then proceeded down the range and passed through Rathdowney on the way to Beaudesert, where we stocked up on local fruits and vegetables and stopped for a coffee break. We then went our separate ways back home to Brisbane.

Despite the weather, there were good spirits throughout the trip. We saw some spectacular scenery en route, albeit sometimes seen through a misty veil of rain and cloud.

Try our fun jigsaw based on scenery from this trip.

Prius ZVW30 Recall

Posted by John on Thu 11-Feb-2010

Toyota Australia has initiated a recall of all ZVW30 (Generation 3) Prius models sold in Australia from its launch in July 2009 until those with a February 2010 production date.

The recall is to apply a software modification to the ABS Braking System computer. This modification is to improve the response time (in milliseconds) of the ABS system engaging if either, or both, front driving wheels lose traction momentarily.

At no time is there any danger of the Prius braking system failing. The modification should take no more than 1 hour, and is obviously free of charge.

Owners can either wait until they receive their official notification letter from Toyota about the recall, or simply contact a Toyota Dealer of your choice to book your Prius in at a convenient time to have the modification applied. You will receive priority assistance by the service department at any Toyota Dealer.

Prius ZVW30 Possible Problems?

Posted by John on Fri 5-Feb-2010

Owners of July 2009 onwards ZVW30 models have probably read reports of possible braking problems with Prius, particularly in the US market.

The Australian Prius models are not exhibiting problems such as those described in the US cars…..however, in a small number of cases here, owners could experience a miniscule delay in braking performance in certain circumstances such as when one (or both) front wheel(s) hits a slippery surface, drops into a pothole, or hits a large bump under light braking. In this instance, the ABS system may experience a minute delay in changing the hydraulic pressure to the brakes, causing a slight lag in retardation. The ABS system will immediately compensate if the brake pedal is pressed harder in this scenario. If any owner experiences the problem (which has been rectified on cars built after the end of January 2010), and has concerns about it, please visit your nearest Toyota dealer. Toyota Australia is monitoring the situation, and owners of any affected Prius will be notified if any action needs to be taken.

There is also a separate problem with various Toyota models sold in overseas markets experiencing sticking accelerator pedals. The electronic accelerator pedal assembly on all Toyotas sold in Australia (both imported and built here) is of a different design and manufacturer to the overseas and Japanese domestic models. No instances of sticking accelerators have been reported in Australia.

The current potential problems only relate to the mid 2009 ZVW30 model Prius, no other model Prius are affected in any way. If you are concerned at all, please visit this link:

Toyota Australia Advice to Prius Customers

New Prius Preview

Posted by John on Fri 31-Jul-2009

New Prius July 2009Our Club was given a preview of the new model Prius at Toyota’s Qld HQ on Monday 20th July. 31 Members and friends attended the night, which was hosted by Toyota’s head Hybrid Technical Trainer in Qld.

After parking in the secure carpark, the night started with a technical presentation in one of the lecture rooms where all the features of the new Prius were explained and shown on-screen. All questions about the car were answered in an easy-to-understand and sometimes humorous way. Everyone who attended the night left the room much more informed about the new features and equipment offered with the new model.

New Prius July 2009From the lecture room, everyone then moved to the inner sanctum…..Toyota’s technical training workshop where the technicians who work on your cars are trained. There were 2 new Prius there for everyone to play with, sit in, look over etc, as well as a gorgeous Lexus convertible (Lexus technicians are trained there, too), a Lexus 4WD and other assorted Toyotas.  Around the room were also assorted engines, transmissions, electrical components and other goodies which are used in making sure the technicians can find and fix faults which may crop up in customers’ cars.

The night ran about 1 hour over the expected time frame as everyone was having too much fun playing with the new cars and asking questions about them….not to mention the odd drool. All in all, a very interesting night where everyone learned a lot about the Generation III Prius. A big Thank You to Peter and Toyota Qld for a rare and very much appreciated opportunity.

New Prius displayed in Melbourne

Posted by John on Mon 16-Mar-2009

2009 Prius Rear Side

At the recent Melbourne Motor Show, Toyota Australia displayed a new model Prius. This is a RHD model, and should be a pointer to what we will be offered when the new model is released here mid-year. Certainly, it should be identical externally and mechanically, but as yet we do not know the final equipment specifications of our models.

We do know, however, that where the US gets 4 different levels of model with differing levels of equipment in each, the Australian cars will stick to 2 models as before. It seems, though, that the current i-Tech should be renamed Hi-Tech with the level of equipment it will have as standard.

The Dark Grey featured is a new colour, with the current Pistachio Green and Light Crystal Blue colours being dropped in the new model, with a lighter Gold replacing the current Bronze. White, Silver, Wildfire Red, Dark Blue and Black remain in the range.

More information as it becomes available soon.

Below is a video and photos of the new Prius shown in Melbourne.

Read more … »

New 2009 Prius

Posted by John on Mon 19-Jan-2009

Full details on the new model 2009 Prius have been released by Toyota, although we will not see it in Australia until around August/September this year.

2009 Prius

2009 Prius

As expected, the overall look is very much along the lines of the current NHW20, although most panels have been changed for a sleeker, slightly more angular look which has even better aerodynamics. The front is the most changed, there is a stronger body line crease, and the roofline has been re-profiled. The rear is also more angular, and has all-new tail lights. Two sizes and styles of alloy wheels are offered, a 15″ and a 17″. A moonroof  incorporating solar cells which power a ventilation system for cooling while the car is parked is also available. LED lights are now used for the low-beam headlights as well as the rear lights.

Mechanically, a new 1.8 litre petrol motor links with a redesigned and lighter Hybrid Synergy Drive to deliver more than 20% more power while using 10%  less fuel than the NHW20. The Prius petrol motor is the first to have a belt-less design, with the water pump now being electrically driven, as is the air-conditioning. The air-conditioning can now be turned on remotely from the key fob so the car is cool when you enter it. Main traction battery remains Nickel-metal Hydride in construction.

In some markets, park assist is offered, whereby the car literally parks itself. Prius cruise control now incorporates radar guidance. This can be shown on the dash display, but monitors the car’s distance from any objects ahead and adjusts speed to maintain a safe distance from them.

2009 Prius interior

2009 Prius interior

The Prius interior is new, with 9 airbags standard, and the previous central screen display incorporated into a flowing console extension linking the centre console and the dash proper. Energy monitoring, fuel consumption, and a range of other info displays can be selected in the main instrument display just below the windscreen. These displays are selected by thumb buttons on the new steering wheel. The new console also incorporates the navigation system (when fitted), climate control screen and controls, and the audio system screen and controls. It also houses the redesigned gear selector. An overhead console incorporates interior lights, moonroof controls (when fitted), and a button to activate Toyota’s SOS emergency assistance system. Seats are new, with more pronounced side bolsters and scalloped-out backs for more support and greater rear kneeroom. There is also more rear seat  headroom thanks to the new roof profile. Two gloveboxes are retained, along with the usual array of drink holders, bins etc, and an I-pod socket in the centre console. A lot of the plastics and seat materials used in the new Prius are plant-derived rather than using petroleum – thus extending the Green image.


It will be interesting to see what standard equipment Toyota Australia specifies for our market, and what optional accessories we are offered. Pricing, of course, will not be announced until just prior to release, so we have to wait for that. Hopefully the world economic crisis might have settled a little by then.

Enjoy the photo album of the new Prius, you can link to it here….

Photos of the 2009 Prius