The Prius was the first large production hybrid vehicle, but over the years several hybrids have been in production for consumers, including the Hyundai Ioniq.
The Ioniq joined the Hyundai line-up in 2016 and since then has been competing with the Toyota Prius. Let’s compare the two vehicles and see which one is the better choice.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than Toyota vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Toyota is ranked 17th, below the industry average.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than Toyota vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai 6th in reliability, above the industry average. With 3 more problems per 100 vehicles, Toyota is ranked 8th.
The Hyundai Ionic comes with America’s Best Warranty with 10 Year/100,000 Miles Powertrain and a 5 Year/60,000 mile Limited Warranty as well as a Limited Lifetime Hybrid Battery warranty.
Toyota Prius only comes with a 3 Year/36,000 Mile Limited Warranty and a 5 Year/60,000 Mile Powertrain Warranty and a 8 Year/100,000 Mile Warranty for the hybrid battery.
With both the Ioniq and Prius being hybrids, they are guaranteed to have great fuel economy. The Prius gets 54 in the city and 50 on the highway, which is unusual as most vehicles get better economy on the highway.
The Ioniq get 57 MPG in the city and 59 on the highway, thanks to its 1.6L I-4 engine and over a 100lb weight difference.
Both vehicles have the industry standard features such as power windows, power mirrors and keyless entry as well as push button start, but that’s where the similarities end.
The Ioniq has Sirius XM Satellite Radio and Smart Device Integration with Android Auto and Apple Car Play as standard features on the base model, the Prius does not offer either of these options on their base model.
As with most of its vehicles, Toyota flexes its safety tech muscle with the standard Toyota Safety Sense collection of driver-assistance features. That includes automatic emergency braking, steering assistance, lane-departure warning, and adaptive cruise control. Much of the same technology is available on the Hyundai Ioniq SEL and Limited, and for 2019 it comes standard on those trims.
Despite a track record of advanced and standard safety technology, there are some blemishes on the Prius’s test-score sheet. Yep, it’s a “Top Safety Pick” from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) but scored only an “Acceptable” rating for the passenger-side small-overlap frontal-impact test.
It also netted a highest-possible 5-star overall rating from the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) but tucked away in the details are 4-star ratings for frontal crash protection and rollover resistance, as well as a 2-star rating for side-impact protection if the Prius slides laterally into a telephone pole.