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2020 Toyota Prius Trim Levels with Comparisons & Configurations.

2020 Toyota Prius Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: L Eco vs LE, XLE vs Limited, LE AWD-e & XLE AWD-e

What 2020 Toyota Prius Trim Level Should you Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

Although the Prius is a fixture on American roads, the groundbreaking hybrid has only been available since 2001. This 2020 Toyota Prius is a member of the fourth generation, which began in 2016. For 2019, Toyota gave the car another facelift and many updates that carry over for the new model year.

The sleek build, which remains recognizable despite changes, is designed to cheat the wind. The 2020 Toyota Prius has a remarkable .24 coefficient of drag.

The Prius comes in L Eco, LE, XLE, and Limited trims. While these may seem familiar, what's really surprising is the fact that you can now get all-wheel drive versions. This feature was introduced for the 2019 model. It makes the Prius a better fit for more regions of the country. The Prius AWD-E is available in LE and XLE trims.

Shoppers should not confuse these trims with the larger Prius v, plug-in Prius Prime or the smaller Prius c. These are separate models with their own trim levels, a different build, and a different powertrain.

Price Tip
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Compare the 2020 Toyota Prius L Eco vs LE Trims. What is the difference?

When it comes to looks, the first and second tier trims are very similar. It is a streamlined design with aerodynamic features such as grille shutters up front. Vertical taillights and rear split glass are hallmarks of the rear. In keeping with its green reputation, all of the exterior lights are LEDs. This includes the LED taillights, stop lights, clearance lights, and projector headlights.

Door handles and mounted shark-fin antenna are color-keyed. The 15-inch full-cover wheels are alloys. The side mirrors power-heat to help with frost, fog or snow. The LE exterior also has a rear window wiper for the large hatch window.

Cargo capacity is spacious for this midsize car. It has 27.4 cubic feet behind the second row. LE models are rated at 24.6 cubic feet. A cargo cover and spare tire are added. If you fold the seats, the area increases to 62.7 cubic feet. You can check out pricey, bigger crossovers and discover that these numbers are very competitive.

Last year's 6.1-inch touch screen has been upgraded to a new 7-inch display. Toyota has added the convenience of Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa connectivity. This system includes Bluetooth audio, a CD player, and USB ports. An eyebrow cluster shows you the speed, the fuel usage, and other vital statistics on a readable color screen. Located in the center, this digital gauge cluster is easy to scan as the driver looks over the screen at the road.

Adjustable front seats are trimmed with fabric in both models. However, the LE seats have seatback pockets. Travelers will appreciate the backseat. There's good legroom, a center armrest, and two rear USB ports.

The Prius has a 3.6-amp-hour lithium-ion battery pack. This assists the electric motor-generator and 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine. Combined output is 121 horsepower and 120 pound-feet of torque. The Smart Key allows the driver to start the car with the push of a button.

L Eco models earn 58 miles per gallon in city driving and 53 miles per gallon on the highway. This 56-mpg-combined rating is due to extra aerodynamic features and low-rolling resistance tires. The LE doesn't have those extras. Yet it has a 52-mpg-combined rating. It breaks down to 54 miles per gallon in the city and 50 miles per gallon in the country.

When it comes to saving money after purchase, the LE isn't very far behind the L Eco. The U.S. Department of Energy fuel calculator reveals a yearly $50 difference in how much they save.

Toyota has made Safety Sense standard on every Prius. The automatic high beams take some of the stress out of night travel. Pedestrian detection and frontal collision dangers will trigger alerts. These systems can cause the Prius to brake automatically in hopes of avoiding a calamity. A lane departure warning tries to help drivers stay out of harm's way. The steering assist helps the driver correct the car's trajectory.

Full-speed range dynamic cruise control has the advantage of radar. It can respond to traffic and slow the Prius for safety. However, it can also increase speed when conditions allow. This dual purpose makes it a better partner for the driver.

Making the LE even safer, it has a blind spot monitor to watch the sides. Studies have shown that a blind spot monitor reduces the chances that the driver will cause an accident. The icon warns drivers not to pull into the path of a car alongside the Prius LE.

Slow maneuvers are less stressful and less dangerous with a rear cross traffic alert, intelligent parking assist and intelligent clearance sonar. For those who have daily parking challenges, these systems will make life nicer. The rear cross traffic alert works like a blind spot monitor when the car is in reverse. It helps drivers avoid a fender bender in parking lots or a bigger crash when backing out of a driveway.

Compare the 2020 Prius LE vs XLE Trims.  What is the difference?

While the LE covers the basics, the XLE adds more refinement with SofTex seats. LE cabins have chrome accents and soft-touch door armrests. Making life softer, XLE cabins have SofTex on the upper door trim and armrest. Matte-black is traded for semi-gloss on the center console.

Drivers get an 8-way power chair with power lumbar. The SofTex-trimmed steering wheel can be power-heated. An especially welcome addition is the Qi-compatible wireless charger. An auto-dimming rearview mirror and rain-sensing wipers are on board as well.

On the XLE, the Smart Key can work on three doors instead of the driver's door only. The two models share the same seven-inch touch screen with Apple CarPlay. Drivers will appreciate the available Wi-Fi hotspot and a three-year subscription to Scout GPS Link. Also complementary, Toyota includes a three-year subscription to Safety Connect with instant notification should a collision occur.

Adaptive front-lighting is offered in a package for the XLE, marking the first place in the line-up where this safety feature is available. With this addition, auto-leveling headlights illuminate the road better than static ones. It's also the first level at which you can get a Prius with a moonroof or a color head-up display.

Compare the 2020 Prius XLE vs Limited.  What is the difference?

These two trims share the same upgraded cabin. This means you get the SofTex leatherette on the seats, armrests, door trim and steering wheel. You also get the heated steering wheel and heated front seats. Prius Limited owners are treated to a much bigger touchscreen. This 11.6-inch split-screen display comes with more speakers and HD radio. Cache radio allows you to replay a song you like on live AM/FM radio.

Adaptive front-lighting and auto-leveling headlights are Limited standards. You'll also find a color head-up display to keep you aware of the speed limit and other concerns. Like the XLE, it wears 17-inch 5-spoke alloys with titanium-finished wheel inserts. A moonroof is still an option, even on this top trim.

Compare the 2020 Prius Limited vs LE AWD-e Trims. What is the difference?

The LE AWD-e models are not as well-appointed as the Limited, which is the top trim. However electronic all-wheel drive is a big advantage for Prius LE drivers who frequently encounter snow.

AWD-e models have a small electric motor that is dedicated to the all-wheel drive system. The extra punch of 40 pound-feet of torque can drive the back tires when met with snow on the road. LE AWD-e models are rated for seven extra horses, meaning a top rate of 128 rather than 121 horsepower when the secondary electric motor is at work.

Instead of the 3.6-amp lithium ion set-up, Toyota uses a 6.5-am-hour nickel-metal hydride pack for AWD-e trims. This battery pack was chosen because nickel-metal hydride handles cold weather conditions better than lithium-ion.

Fuel economy drops slightly with all-wheel drive. However, the Prius LE AWD-e still rates more highly than any other all-wheel drive vehicle in this price range. The 50-mpg-combined rating breaks down to 48 miles per gallon on the highway and 52 miles per gallon in the city. The regular Prius earns 54/50/52 miles per gallon in city/highway/combined driving.

AWD-e models have fog lights for difficult weather. In addition, Toyota adds LED accent lights for greater visibility to other drivers. These two features aren't offered on the four regular trims.

The LE AWD-e cabin and features are more in line with the standard LE. It does not have SofTex seats, a power driver's chair, a Qi charger, or rain-sensing wipers like the Limited. Cloth seats, a matte black center console and the 7-inch touch screen are standards.

Compare the 2020 Toyota Prius LE AWD-e vs XLE AWD-e Trims.  What is the difference?

The XLE AWD-e is a dressier version of the LE AWD-e. The two share the extra horsepower and torque that comes with the electric motor dedicated to all-wheel drive. Either one is good for snowy regions.

Both have slightly lower fuel economy than the front-wheel drive models. Still, at 52 mpg combined, this gas mileage will save the owner big money over the years. Like most in the Prius lineup, they come with a tire repair kit rather than a spare.

Rain-sensing wipers are added to the XLE AWD-e standards list. Shoppers can get auto-leveling headlights in a package on the XLE AWD-e that isn't available on the LE AWD-e.

SofTex lines the seats with softness. It's on the doors and steering wheel. Semi-gloss replaces matte black, and a Qi charger is on the dash. XLE Smart Keys open three doors by touch whereas the LE Smart Key can only open the driver's door.

Still, the XLE AWD-e isn't as advanced as the Limited. It doesn't list a driver's power chair or the large touch screen.

Buying Tip: To avoid overpaying on a new car, shop prices online first. Get up front pricing before you walk into a dealership. We recommend the following free services; Car Clearance Deals,   Edmunds,   CarsDirect,   NADAguides  &  Motortrend. These free services will offer you the lowest prices and supply you with multiple competing price quotes. You will know the best price before you visit the dealer.

Which Trim to Choose?

The Prius XLE owner will be the happiest one perhaps. This model has so many features for the driver, including the power chair, rain sensing wipers, and wireless charger. The softer cabin with its leatherette makes it look more expensive than it is. Total energy costs are $750, according to the U.S. Department of Energy fuel calculator. This saves $3,500 over five years compared to the average new vehicle.

There are certainly other Prius trims that will appeal to different sorts of buyers. For the one who is completely focused on the household budget, the L Eco will make them feel quite accomplished. Compared to the average new vehicle, the Prius L Eco is set to save its owner $3,750 over five years. Annual fuel costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy fuel calculator, are $700 a year. Of course, it costs the least of all models, keeping initial costs down.

For someone who wants to the safest possible Prius, the LE will be a good fit. It has extra safety precautions and parking help. Every Prius has been rated five stars by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

If all-wheel drive is essential, shoppers will appreciate that they have two choices. For tighter budgets, the LE AWD-e still has so much technology that it is a valuable package. With its emphasis on the driver and comfy SofTex seats, it's likely that the XLE AWD-e will be the favorite option of the two.  

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Previous Toyota Prius Trim Configurations:

Compare the 2019 Toyota Prius Trim Levels
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