OP: dealer add-ons such as paint sealants and the like are worthless. Extended warranties are expensive insurance policies, which means that, on average, they make a profit for the sellers, not for the buyers. Cancel the wildly over-priced warranty you bought and use the cash to pay off some debt or put it into a money market account. If you absolutely must have an extended warranty for "peace of mind", the very same warranty is available for $1,000. Search for example at http://priuschat.com.
I have a pair of 2002 Prius (the sedan model that looks like a Ford Focus sedan), so I can accept the manual may be different. However the engine is essentially identical. The 2002 manual doesn't say much about oil consumption except that short trips in town may provide a false sense of oil not being consumed because of moisture build-up. But the cars themselves, at about 75K miles and 110K miles, don't consume noticeable amounts of oil between the 5K mile changes.
The safe thing to do with any car is to check the oil at every fill-up. (And I should floss my teeth every night!) Sometimes a broken piston ring will show up as sudden oil consumption in the quart per 600 mile range.
I don't own a Prius, but have friends who do. In the last 12 weeks I have seen 5 Prius' dead along the side of the road including my friend's Prius. This is higher by a factor of 5 over any other car on the side of the road. So much for reliability. There is obviously something wrong with this car that no one seems to be mentioning. In the case of my friend's car, there was a software problem with the computer control and it needed a patch upgrade done under warranty.
Just bought a Silver Metallic with Package # 3.
Wow what a cool car. I'm 58 years old and it's refreshing to be able to afford a car that excites me. Plenty of storage and cup holders. I'm averaging 50 MPG, and I'm at 1000 miles. Back-up camera is a great feature only to monitor if someone is behind the car. Distortion (wide angle lens) forbids the use of this camera for anything else. Digital displays are very handy. Fun to drive, however, the one drawback is pickup. In order to accelerate you must really kick down the gas pedal. A small price to pay to have this car. If you're 30 or under, and like Mustangs, DO NOT buy this car.
I have heard that the Corolla gets about the same MPG as the Prius in mixed city/highway driving. Anyone heard of comparisons? If the MPG is even with 5-8 miles the difference in purchase price between the two would make if it a 'no brainer' to go with the Corolla.
I know two Prius owners, one gets about 50 mpg in nothing, but city driving, and the other gets about 55 having to drive the highway to work. However, I still like the Corolla better. You can drive them every day for 20 years, and even if the body rusts off finally, the engine would still be there idling on the ground. They run forever.
I have a leased Prius and I love it. They actually do go pretty fast too. I was amazed at the acceleration on the freeway when I wanted to pass cars: I could get up to 75 or 80 from 65 in a short amount of seconds.
On a trip from Santa Cruz to Santa Barbara and back, I got 44 MPG and was averaging 70 MPH on US Highway 101. I even got off the 101 in south Monterey County onto an old stretch of road that used to be 101, a road hardly anyone uses anymore, to race it up to 97.
So anyone who claims these cars don't accelerate well is full of it! They might not be Corvettes, but for a mid-size station wagon, they're pretty zippy, and even from a standing start. Toyota increased the torque of the electric motors by nearly doubling the voltage. The 2007 and 2008 models are faster cars than the previous years' models. Flooring a Prius means all three motors are going full blast! If one has seen the documentary "Who Killed the Electric Car" one would know that the GM EV1 electric car beat a Corvette. Toyota didn't increase the power of the gasoline engine, but increased the power of the two electric motors in the Prius, thereby giving the car more pickup and more speed overall. I've talked to other Prius owners about this: they all claim they've been surprised at the Prius' acceleration ability, a bonus not foreseen.
Regarding anyone who claims that they'd rather buy an all gasoline car with the same mileage, figure it out! At least some of the time a Prius does not use any gasoline. The next generation of Priuses will use even less fossil fuel! Oil companies have got to hate that! I'm fed up with anti-hybrid propoganda that obviously is perpetuated by the oil conglomerates.
I bought a Prius T Spirit in May 2008 as a replacement for my taxi. The car that it replaced was a Ford Mondeo 2.0 diesel that averaged 35mpg. My Prius averages 51mpg. Where I live and work, there are quite a lot of hills, and the car has no problems tackling those hills, even with five adults on board.
I've driven 21,000 miles so far, and had no problems (knock wood).
With passengers getting in and out of the car multiple times every day, leather seats were a must for me. After six months of quite heavy use, they still look like new, (and are very comfortable).
Here in the UK, the hybrid technology has a 8 year, 100,000 mile warranty. I don't think that Toyota would offer that warranty if the batteries stop working after 2 years (as another poster suggested).
The T Spirit in the UK has 'park assist' that will reverse the car into a parking space for you. You control the speed at which the car reverses, but the car does the steering. Every time I have used it, It's worked perfectly.
There's only one thing I don't like about the car. The rear window. It's small, and the rear windscreen wiper only wipes two thirds of the screen. Having said that, the rear view camera helps when reversing.
To the original poster:
How was the impact of wind on the vehicle during highway jaunts?
One of the engineers I work with traded in his Camry for a Prius. He says the Camry was more stable in the wind.
Consumer Guide has this to say about wind. "Prius is less stable in crosswinds than most conventional mid size sedans."
Someone was asking for a comparison to the Honda Civic. Consumer Guide says this. "All Civics have fine straightline stability even in crosswinds."
You have not seen 5 Priuses on the side of the road broken down.
How many people says they've seen 5 of the same kind of cars on the road broken down. You're just a Prius hater, don't try to convince others not to buy it just because you don't like it.
I commute 150 miles a day on the freeway with my Prius. I've never seen a broken down Prius on the side.