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Don't make the mistake of thinking that one of your driving goals is to maximize the use of battery power. Rather than dragging out your acceleration trying to keep the engine from starting, accelerate briskly but not full out (2/3 to 3/4 down on the accelerator pedal). When you reach your desired speed, then quickly back off the pedal slightly more than necessary to maintain speed and then feather it forward to maintain your speed. This will allow the Prius to run long distances at moderate speed mostly on battery power. It's not wasteful to run the engine during acceleration when it's under enough load to be efficient. It's during moderate speed cruising that engine is lightly loaded and thus fairly inefficient. The Prius is already programmed to recognize this. Don't try to force it to run battery only except when you know for sure that the upcoming terrain justifies it (i.e. you're going to start a long decent soon and need room in the battery to store more energy).

Things to remember:
- The battery is small, don't expect it to be your primary source of power.

- The engine is least efficient under very light or no load. That's when you want it off.

- The battery allows use of a smaller, slower responding, lower emission engine. This is it's main contribution to increased mileage.

- The battery allows capture of braking energy (regeneration). That's it's next big contribution to increased mileage.

- Normally, there is a net loss of energy if the engine is used to charge the battery which is later used to power the Prius. This can turn into a gain if at the time of charging the engine is running under a fairly heavy load and at the time of battery use the engine would otherwise be running under a very light load.

- Flooring it runs the engine full out and discharges the battery. This is also inefficient. Try not to go more than 3/4 accelerator pedal except where traffic conditions insist otherwise. A non-dented Prius is more aerodynamic :)
 
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