2019 Toyota Prius AWD-e Review: Can It Tackle Snowy Roads?

With the unveiling of the facelifted Prius last year, Toyota, for the first time ever, also launched an optional electric all-wheel drive system in the U.S.

The Prius AWD-e adds an extra electric motor that powers the rear wheels when needed. It works at speeds up to 43 mph (69 km/h) and improves traction on slippery surfaces.

The all-wheel drive Prius should, thus, appeal to clients living in cold climates, who didn’t see Toyota’s hybrid as a viable alternative until now. Moreover, it now uses a new nickel-metal hybrid battery that’s optimized to work in cold temperatures. It’s placed under the rear seat and, as a result, has no impact on the cargo capacity or rear legroom.

Also Read: Toyota Corolla Sedan Hybrid Might Get The New Prius’ All-Wheel Drive

The Prius AWD-e returns an average of 50 mpg (60 mpg UK / 4.7 l/100 km), according to Toyota, a minor drop to the front-wheel drive Prius L that has an average rating of 56 mpg (67 mpg UK / 4.2 l/100 km).

Since this is a part of the the revamped, 2019 Prius, it has a few visual upgrades on the outside, such as the restyled lighting units and bumpers. The interior has been slightly revised as well, but nothing major.

Edmunds traveled to Wisconsin to drive the 2019 Prius AWD-e on a snowy course. The reviewer got the chance to compare the traction of both the AWD and FWD models on the same improvised road. So, is it that big of a difference between the two? Find out right below.


  • jfalckt

    It’s got to do better than the SEAT Arona ‘SUV’ with winter tires I drove today (VW T-Roc / Skoda something K and Q to be launched will be the same). It took me and 2 additional passers by to push and negotiate it back into its parking space on a snowy day with about 4” – 6” of snow.

    • Matt

      Was it FWD?

      • Joe

        Of course. The Arona is only available with FWD.

  • WalthamDan

    Too bad the front still looks like a demented pig

  • ➡️ProtectOurHeritage⬅️

    The Hyundai Ioniq isn’t pretty, but looks far better than the laughable Prius.

  • Six_Tymes

    Would be great if they could have added a Subaru for another comparison option. lol

    Also, why is the Prius so damn ugly? how does Toyota not know this?

  • Koromie

    Ugly as sin. I’ll stick with my FWD PHEV Prius prime. Just have to be careful with the snow. Lol

  • brn

    It’s about time. The FWD Prius is about the worst mass consumer snow vehicle available for sale in the US.

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