The roll-y grail?

Yes, that’s a Prius in the snow. Don’t laugh – apparently the new AWD version is legit.


For mountain-dwellers holding out for an all-wheel-drive hybrid vehicle, your prayers have been answered – for the most part.

For 2019, Toyota has introduced the all-new Prius AWD-e to snowy American roadways. Starting at just over $26,000, the all-wheel drive version of the beloved (and oft ridiculed) gas teetotaler gets between 48 to 52 miles to the gallon.

Getting the job done is an extralight, 7.1- horsepower motor that powers the rear wheels whenever traction-control sensors dictate. However, what could be a sticking (or non-sticking be it as it may) point for some: the AWD only engages up to 43 mph. After that, the Prius reverts to its 2WD roller skate ways.

But for Kelly Bastone, who recently wrote in Outside online about testing the Prius AWD-e at the Bridgestone Driving School in Steamboat, it’s not a deal breaker. In the plus column, she noted the car’s “snappy” and “road-hugging” characteristics as well as an ample hatchback for all manner of gear.

“Sure, my test car got a boost from Bridgestone Blizzak snow tires,” she wrote. “If that’s all it takes to make this Prius stick like Velcro to snowy roads, the combination is a clear winner.”