all my life i wanted a car that got 40 mpg.
I used to [ & still do] hate going to the gas station & coughing up $40.00 for a tank of gas.
jan 17,13, - i finally bought a car that _almost_ does.

I got a 2008 prius with 94,000 miles for $14,500.00 from a toyota dealer.
I could have gotten the same year prius from a used car lot for $9,000.00 but with 134,000 miles & looking really beat.
Mine is showroom clean,with no marks or dents at least for another couple of weeks, until the crows see it & make a bombing run on it.

my 30 mile drive home from the dealership got me 25 mpg highway and 27 mpg city.

I thought i was driving home slow to get good gas mileage, 55 to 60,hiway, but using the way a regular gas engine (my 98 honda civic) gets better mileage.

I was beside myself thinking that they had sold me a prius with the prior owners problems, that is, it dont get mpg for nothing.

this caused me to do a weeks research on prius generation2

you have to learn a different way of driving a prius.

0 to 25 mph ,electric, then it swiches to gas, moderate acceleration to 35 or 40 and then let all the way off the gas, into regenerative braking, if you need to charge the ni cads. but this slows you down rather quickly and you end up using gas in a little spurt to get back up to 40 mph-- if you have room before the next light.

So i learn GLIDING which is just the same EXCEPT when you get up to 40 mph and let compleatly off the gas now you press the gas just a little to go into glide mode.
use a feather touch here, because too hard a press on the gas goes into gas engine acceleration. while gliding, the gas engine is running on idle or may shut off, depending on if you get the right touch to the gas pedal.
so far,i think my gas engine is idling while i glide, but it may be off, i cant hear when the gas engine is running unelse i really step on it hard and make it groan. that, i can hear. 42 years of firearms practice ruined my ears.

any ways, in glide mode,
you can tell because you dont feel the slow down caused by regenerative coasting, you actually feel the car rolling a bit faster & easier, in glide.

I cant see the arrows on the multi function display without my reading glasses and i cant drive with my reading glasses on, (not fun, even a little, being 64 years old) so i learned to do it by feel of car rolling freely.

so ,i end up with 38.9 mpg combined, with glide -- still not the 45 highway/ 50 city as advertised.
I went back to toyota , 60 day warrantee, and the service guy did a test drive to make sure every thing was working ok and it was.

How i resolved it.

The car came with new mud & snow tires, which is a big plus in conn. in jan in case we get a foot of snow (northeaster blizzard) BUT snow tires are at least a 10 % MPG
penility and 17 degree driving can be a 30 % mpg penility.

So, im starting off with a 40% mpg penility for snow tires and artic weather driving. 7 deg outside as i type.

I put a can of fuel injector cleaner in the gas tank, cost $!.00 ,at dollar tree or $3.00 at wal mart & i feel that this will get me 3 to 5 mpg more, even in the 10 deg weather.

It always did with my regular gas engine cars.

so, I am hoping to see 45 highway & 50 city, as advertised in the spring & summer & even if i dont, at least i am getting 39.4 mpg thanks to the injector cleaner i put in the gas.
so far i went 120 miles on 2 bars of the gas gague, which has 10 bars & a 11.6 gal capacity, so 20 % x 11.6 gal= 2.32 gal gas into 120 miles=51.72 mpg from the( guess gague ), because the gas gague is so inaccurate because of the rubber bladder gas tank.

so im either getting 39.4 mpg if i believe the mfd or 51.72 if i believe the gas gague or
45.56 if i take the average of the two.

spring will tell and i have not yet tried increasing my tire pressure to the maximum rating printed on the sidewalls of the mud & snow tires, because its too dammed cold outside , this month.

If any one has some advise or knowledge, or your own experience, please reply to this
post.