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older priuses

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Posted by bob on April 24, 2008, 2:17 am
i currently own a new prius and am relocating and going to get another car
at the new location: thinking older used prius.

when did they start?
how are the batteries holding up on the older ones?


Posted by Bob & Holly Wilson on April 24, 2008, 9:14 am

1997-2000 -> Model NHW10 sold only in Japan but now being exported
2001-2003 -> Model NHW11 sold world wide and first in USA
2004->now-> Model NHW20 sold world wide

The NHW10 owners are working on battery replacements and refurbishment
efforts. They are dealing with "D" sized battery strings.

The NHW11s introduced prismatic batteries to the Prius line and we are
seeing the a few cases of battery replacement. I'm working on battery

The NHW20 has a much improved, redesigned battery with thicker pastic
and improved terminal seals.

IMHO, a 2003 Prius or 2005 and later would make sense for a used one.
This should give you the best reliability for a used hybrid. I would
avoid the 2001 and 2004 models since these were the first production
year units. Not every fix got into these models in the field.

Bob Wilson

Posted by xf on April 28, 2008, 5:42 am
 On Thu, 24 Apr 2008 04:14:39 -0500, bwilson4use@hotmail.com (Bob &
Holly Wilson) wrote:

I have a 2001 and 2008. The 2001 had its battery replaced by a dealer
who couldn't figure out the real problem (a documented accelerator
switch problem!) and so I got a new battery at about 5 years.
Otherwise no problem, though I would go for the 2004 and later just
because of their looks.

My college kid is getting my 2001.

Posted by bob on April 29, 2008, 12:36 am

is the 2003 the one in the "echo" style body? i need a temporary car, maybe
6 months, and i was thinking about an echo or an "echo styled" older prius -
provided the batteries are reliable. (i currently have an 07 prius for my
permanent car).


Posted by Bob & Holly Wilson on April 29, 2008, 9:35 am

That is correct. As for the batteries, it is difficult to get them
evaulated unless you take it to a Toyota service department ... or live
near one of the Prius experts.

What you need is to have the battery internal resistance test. This
involves using a scanner to read the voltages of the weakest and
strongest battery module pairs. The limit is 0.3 V and this test,
somewhat time consuming and likely several hundred dollars, can answer
that question.

Bob Wilson

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