Lawsuit Claims Toyota Overstated Electric Range Of Prius Plug-In Hybrid


Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid

Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid

EPA Lists All-Electric Range At 0 to 6 Miles

EPA Lists All-Electric Range At 0 to 6 Miles

Plaintiff Richard Rosenbaum has filed a class action lawsuit against Toyota claiming that the automaker has misrepresented the electric-only range of the plug-in hybrid.

According to the suit, Toyota’s claim that the Prius plug-in can go up to 13 miles on a single charge is not true.

Officially, Toyota says “up to 13 miles,” which would include anything from 0 to 13 miles on electric power alone, but apparently that’s not clear enough, so a suit has been filed.

As Top Class Actions reports:

“Plaintiff Richard Rosenbaum filed the Prius class action lawsuit last week in Michigan federal court. He says he purchased a Toyota Prius Plug-In vehicle in 2012 because he wanted to make his 12.07-mile trip from his home to his work without using the gasoline engine.”

“After he purchased the Toyota Prius, Rosenbaum discovered that he was only able to travel approximately 8 miles with a full electric charge, the Prius class action lawsuit alleges. This mileage was only possible during the summer months, according to Rosenbaum.”

The EPA rating for the 2012 Prius plug-in lists all-electric range at 0 to 6 miles, so Rosenbaum’s 8-mile range actually exceeds the EPA figures.

The rest of Rosenbaum’s claims are somewhat questionable too:

“According to the Prius class action lawsuit, Rosenbaum’s Prius does not operate in electric mode at all if the temperature is lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature is lower than 55 degrees, the Prius will automatically operate the gas engine when the power is turned on.”

Yes, that’s precisely how the Prius PHV is designed to operate.

We honestly don’t believe that this class action lawsuit will reach the level of impacting Toyota at all, but as always, we’re here to present the news in the EV industry, regardless of whether or not we see it as impactful on a grand scale.  If somehow Rosenbaum comes out ahead in this case, it certainly would be.

Source: Top Class Actions

Categories: Toyota

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21 Comments on "Lawsuit Claims Toyota Overstated Electric Range Of Prius Plug-In Hybrid"

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Definitely a case of not doing your research…

Yeah, but still a 55 degree ERDTLT (snicker, snicker).

David, What’s Volt 2? is it still selectable, ~36 or 15 degrees F? Not that you’d need to know, in Dallas.

at 55 degrees, you’re running the heat so you might as well start the engine.

Guess he should have gotten a Volt. Lol!

Yep.. I suspect he just has buyer’s remorse for not getting a Volt.

He and other buyers of Plug-in Prius SHOULD have buyer’s remorse for the getting the plug-in Prius instead of the Volt unless they regularly go on multi-hundred mile trips. (The Prius does get better MPG when using gasoline.)

lol, what a douchebag…


For sure he will get some money for a frivolous law suit

No doubt a frivolous lawsuit, just an attempt to game the system. It will most likely fail.

A buddy of mine frequently gets 15+ miles on his battery.

15 miles is a Joke.

Volt is overrated.

I believe he is talking about the Plug-in Prius, not the Volt (which is a great car).

We have plenty of leach lawyers trying to suck settlement for nothing. Even small chance of success to get big settlement may make whole parasitic process of multiple frivolous lawsuits profitable eventually.

I also own a Prius Plug In. It is one of the first.

I have learned that battery power is subject to temperature and range is longer if I am light on the throttle. This is also true of gasoline engines but it is not as noticeable. Toyota engineers did a fine job of mixing a gasoline engine with an electric motor in this car. It turns out that buyers wanted the electric portion of this car to be free of gasoline. That will change in the next Prius Plug In (and it is more like the Volt).

Well . . . this is Karma biting back at Toyota for releasing such sad pathetic under-batteried and under-motored PHEV.

Hi, shouldn’t we all be thanking Toyota? I mean, they were the ones that showed the rest of the world what could be done. Without them, well, we might not be here, having this discussion.

Good point, One.

I can see both sides. I like the electric experience without carrying around an expensive battery which does not get used to its capacity. On the other hand the electric experience is spoiled when the gasoline engine comes on, especially when there is “juice” left in the battery. Toyota did this because they were aiming for maximum efficiency and sometimes using a combination of gasoline and electricity is the most efficient.

People made it clear. They prefer the electric experience to efficiency. The market gets what it wants.


For a passenger car, using gasoline is NEVER more efficient than using electricity. Burning gasoline (not to mention all the energy initially expended just getting the gasoline TO the car to begin with) is a MASSIVELY inefficient enterprise.

Once gasoline is delivered to the average gasoline car, it then proceeds to utterly WASTE around 75% of the potential energy contained in the gasoline as heat. Only about 25% of the energy is ever converted to useful motion. (And this ratio is not much different for a Prius. It is still basically a gasoline car.)

The average electric car, on the other hand, converts 80-90% of the energy delivered to it into useful motion. Plus, the generation and delivery of that energy is also massively more efficient than oil extraction, gasoline refinement, and delivery.

Foo, never is not a good word to use in matter such as this. You have a point, but you overlook the whole issue of mechanical efficiency which is related to emissions which is a big issue for Toyota engineers.

Torque is the ability to increase speed. Some think of it as power because it feels that way. Electric motors have their greatest torque at low speeds. Gasoline engines have their greatest torque at high speeds. The amount of power expected by the demand of the accelerator pedal is going to effect on the amount of emissions, especially if the gasoline engine is not yet warm. Computers are programed to adjust for these things. There are conditions where the most effective mechanical efficiency involves both the gasoline engine and the electric motor.

One suggested that we should thank Toyota because without them we would not be having this discussion. I agree.

Someone with deep pockets needs to sue ICE manufacturers and fossil fuel industry for producing toxic products.