Toyota's Prius Plug-In Approved for California Clean Vehicle Rebate

Today Toyota confirmed that the 2012 Prius Plug-in is approved by California’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Program (CVRP).

The vehicle will also be eligible for California HOV lane sticker for solo access, and is eligible for a first-come, first served $1,500 rebate available to anyone who purchases or leases a Prius Plug-In for 36 months or longer.

Combined with a $2,500 federal tax credit, California Plug-In consumers could net $4,000 if all incentives are fully taken advantage of.

As explained in our review, the Plug-In utilizes a 4.4-kwh lithium-ion battery. It offers fairly quick recharging at 2.5 to 3 hours using an ordinary 120-volt outlet, or 1.5 hours if with a 240-volt charger.

Toyota has started its limited 2012 roll out to dealerships, with nationwide availability scheduled for 2013.

For now, 14 states will get the Plug-In, these being: California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia.

The base MSRP for the Prius Plug-In Hybrid is $32,000 while the Advanced model has an MSRP of $39,525. This latter version comes standard with features including Premium HDD Navigation with Entune, Plug-In Hybrid Applications through a smartphone, Head-up Display, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, and more.


  • Max Reid

    If we drive 15 miles / day and around 300 days / year, that works out to 4,500 miles / year and for someone who drives 12,000 miles / year, its 37% of the distance in Electric Miles.

    Besides Prius also captures regenerative energy and gives 50 miles/gallon in other driving.

    At 32K, it may compete with Volt and to some extent with Leaf.
    Remember, Prius interior volume is 115 cu. ft which is just 1 less than Camry.

  • MrEnergyCzar

    The PIP issue will be you use gas when you go on the highway… same with plug-in Accord and plug-in Ford Energi…. very short electric ranges for the way people drive in the states… great car though.
    MrEnergyCzar

  • Kalan Ickes

    Can anybody confirm that Toyota has stopped taking reservations for the Prius PHEV even in the 14 states that had early roll-out? If so, why: did they sell out or is something wrong? Thanks.

  • Capt. Concernicus

    @ Max,

    The PIP does compete with the Volt. They’re both plug-in hybrids.

    I’d be interested in looking at one and maybe even buying one, but it’s not offered here yet. I can wait until it is offered here.

  • Van

    Hi Max, I think it is unlikely that someone with a PHV would only get 4500 miles of electric. First, it does not matter the speed, for when the electric is only assisting, that still cuts fuel usage.

    Lets say I drive 13 miles to work and then return home for 5 days a week, and 50 weeks a year. And I recharge at work. That gives me around 6500 miles. Next, I get 50 MPG for the other 5500 miles.
    So I burn 110 gallons of regular at $3.80.

    Whereas in the Volt, I get that 6500 miles electric, with no recharge needed at work, but only 35 MPG for the remaining 5500 miles. I burn 157 gallons of premium gas at $4.00 per gallon.

    So I save $5000 or so in initial purchase price with the Prius PHV, and possibly more considering the resale advantage of Toyota, plus, for the work of plugging in at work, and another $200 or so in annual fuel cost.

  • dutchinchicago

    I had been waiting for a Prius plug in for about five years. When the Leaf and Volt came out I decided that I waited long enough for a Prius Plug In and got a Volt.

    Once you have a plug-in it becomes a real obsession to avoid burning gas. We often stop for a quick charge somewhere even though we could easily get home on the gas engine. We cringe when the engine comes on on the rare occasions that it is too cold and the Volt insists on running the engine.

    I could not imagine driving a Prius Plugin with only 15 miles of range. The part which would get me most is that if you accelerate slightly to fast the engine will come on.

    I have burned less than one gallon in the last 500 miles and I hope to burn 0 in the next 500 miles. With a Prius plug in that becomes impossible.

    If you have to get a Prius get the Plug in but I am surprised how much I like the Volt after having driving it for a couple of months.

    Both cars are clear winners for the environment but the Volt is more fun in that it can really burn no gas but still has unlimited range for the occasional road trip (unlike the Leaf I owned before this).

  • alessandra

    I think that this is such a good fact from Toyota and I am sure that they will continue on doing a lot of changes to the cars and the future seems to be brighter :D
    Asigurari RCA

  • Nicks525

    Can someone tell me if we can get the 2,500 federal tax credit on a lease for the plugin? I see conflicting information. Not 100% sure on this

  • greg45

    This rebate program is so good to see for a lot of people. I see a lot people taking advantage of this rebate. So good to see that it was approved. It is so important for the environment. Upper Canada ADR