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I just purchased a 2005 prius. when i'm on the highway, cruising at say 70 mph, the car seems less smooth than my non-hybrid car -- as though the throttle was just slightly shifting or something. does this have something to do with the hybrid/conventional motors working together. the same thing occured on the car i test drove, so i'm assuming this is normal. does it lessen over time? thanks all...
 

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I drive at those speeds daily when commuting and I've never noticed that. The car runs smoothly. The only time I have ever noticed any roughness related to the engine/motor is when the ICE shuts off the first time or two when the car is cold. Are the tires over-pressured leading to a rough ride?
 

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lciprius said:
I just purchased a 2005 prius. when I’m on the highway, cruising at say 70 mph, the car seems less smooth than my non-hybrid car -- as though the throttle was just slightly shifting or something. does this have something to do with the hybrid/conventional motors working together. the same thing occurred on the car i test drove, so i'm assuming this is normal. does it lessen over time? thanks all...
I'd love to be able to give you an intelligent answer, however I'm missing a lot of information. Why types of driving conditions were you experiencing, specifically the topography of the road, hills, valleys, inclines, etc. Were there any long descents or ascents. It is also helpful knowing the outside weather conditions, like the temperature and if the roadway was wet, icy, snowy, dry. Were you using cruise control, or not? Were you experiencing this after sufficient period for ICE warm-up or had you started the vehicle cold and were just getting it out on the highway?

The good news is that if you experienced this on your test drive, it is going to be normal, however we should be able to give you a more specific idea of what is going on with your car if we know more about the exact driving conditions you were in.
 

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thanks for your replies -- to clarify, at highway speeds there seems to be some kind of a hiccup, as though the car was shifting subtly. this happens not when i'm accelerating, but rather when i let up off the gas, the hit the throttle again.

could this be due to the fact that it is new? again, thanks...
 

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i just spoke to toyota -- evidently what it is is the car shifting between the electric and conventional motors and that it is normal. has anyone seen this diminish over the course of time?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
yeah, i'm down with that. it's a grand car... i just want to make sure that the weird stuff is werid-normal as opposed to weird-bad.
 

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lciprius said:
thanks for your replies -- to clarify, at highway speeds there seems to be some kind of a hiccup, as though the car was shifting subtly. this happens not when i'm accelerating, but rather when i let up off the gas, the hit the throttle again.

could this be due to the fact that it is new? again, thanks...
and

lciprius said:
i just spoke to toyota -- evidently what it is is the car shifting between the electric and conventional motors and that it is normal. has anyone seen this diminish over the course of time?
First off, I doubt that the sensation of the HSD system will even diminish. In general, if a senesation in a vehicle diminshes over time, it ususally indicates wear and eventual failure. Case in point, automatic transmissions which become smooth and even mushy in terms of shifting as they get older are getting closer and closer to needing work done on them.

At highway speeds, if the road conditions are correct, if you let off the gas the vehicle will turn off the ICE and will start to coast/regenerate. When you return your foot to the gas, depending on how much acceleration you demand the vehicle might try to maintain your speed on electric, or it will fire up the gas engine again.

You will notice many differences in this car as compared to traditional vehicles. This car doesn't shift, this car has other sensations regarding the power plant which are totally foreign to most drivers, initially. You seem to be paying a great deal of attention to how this car operates, at least in a sensual manner, in time you will come to expect certain sensations during certain driving conditions.
 

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This is a normal condition for a Prius. Both for my car and other posters who have reported the subtle shifting/shudder. It is the ICE and electric motor switching. You should find this evident as you watch the Energy display (keeping in mind a 2-3 sec. delay) as this condition occurs. For me, it seemed to do it more when new, although I have probably gotten used to it also. I find it no longer is a concern. It can also be induced more often by how you accelerate or do pulse and glide.
 

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ICE

I think that even I know this one....Internal Combustion Engine..right? That is where this site comes in handy. I still feel odd walking away from my car while it makes it little noises, the rougher shudder when the ICE first shuts down at a light and all the other little quirks. I figure if there is no "Fix It" light on then I am pretty good. Everyday driving this car is a new experience for me. Well worth the extra cost in original cash out. It exercizes my brain and my foot (keeping it off the gas peddle more is really making that ankle stronger!!)
 

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Are you guys sure you aren't the princess from the princess and the pea? Either that or your highways are glass smooth. I can't detect the car switching back and forth except when it is very cold. I've tried to train myself to do it, but so far I have not succeeded!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
i can echo what salsa said -- all the little things that happen, the motor shutting off thing etc. -- it's really cool actually and does exercise the brain to have a car that has such a personality

and yeah, i'm very princess and the pea -- and not just about my prius...


finally -- jeff_h -- you have cruise control on your 2005 #4? that must mean i have it too...
 

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When I get asked how it feels when the ICE shuts off or restarts mid-flight, I tell them it feels like a somewhat hard transmission shift.

The shuddering is another matter, and only appears to occur when actually stopped. I believe it has to do with preventing evaporative emissions with the akinson/miller setup.
 
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