2019 Volkswagen e-Golf vs. 2019 Toyota Prius

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The e-Golf has a standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Prius doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Both the e-Golf and the Prius have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The e-Golf’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Prius’ (12 vs. 5 years).

Engine

The e-Golf’s electric motor produces 13 more horsepower (134 vs. 121) and 108 lbs.-ft. more torque (214 vs. 106) than the Prius’ 1.8 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the e-Golf gets better fuel mileage than the Prius:

MPGe

e-Golf

FWD

Electric Motor

126 city/111 hwy

Prius

MPG

FWD

Eco 1.8 4 cyl. Hybrid

58 city/53 hwy

1.8 4 cyl. Hybrid

54 city/50 hwy

eAWD

1.8 4 cyl. Hybrid

52 city/48 hwy

The e-Golf’s maximum EPA estimated driving range is 125 miles on a full charge. The Prius can only travel about 1 mile before it has to start its internal combustion engine.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Volkswagen e-Golf higher (10 out of 10) than the Toyota Prius (7). This means the e-Golf produces up to 11.8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Prius every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the e-Golf’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Prius:

e-Golf

Prius

Front Rotors

11.3 inches

10 inches

Rear Rotors

10.7 inches

10.2 inches

The e-Golf stops shorter than the Prius:

e-Golf

Prius

70 to 0 MPH

175 feet

179 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the e-Golf has larger tires than the Prius (205/55R16 vs. 195/65R15).

The e-Golf’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Prius’ standard 65 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the e-Golf has standard 16-inch wheels. Smaller 15-inch wheels are standard on the Prius.

Suspension and Handling

The e-Golf SE handles at .86 G’s, while the Prius pulls only .79 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The e-Golf executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the Prius L Eco (27.9 seconds @ .61 average G’s vs. 28.9 seconds @ .55 average G’s).

Chassis

The e-Golf is 11.9 inches shorter than the Prius, making the e-Golf easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The e-Golf has .9 inches more front shoulder room, .7 inches more rear headroom, 2.2 inches more rear legroom and .9 inches more rear shoulder room than the Prius.

Ergonomics

The e-Golf has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Prius doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The power windows standard on both the e-Golf and the Prius have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the e-Golf is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Prius prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

If the windows are left open on the e-Golf the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows with the driver’s door power window switch. The driver of the Prius can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The e-Golf’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Prius’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the e-Golf has a standard rear wiper. The Prius L Eco doesn’t offer a rear wiper.

The e-Golf’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Prius doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the e-Golf and the Prius offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the e-Golf has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Prius doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

Recommendations

The Golf was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 13 of the last 13 years. The Prius has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the Golf as their 2015 Car of the Year. The Prius has never been chosen.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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