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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just bought a 2007 Prius about 23 hours ago and I love it! However, it is a weird little car. I searched this site and could not find the answer to this question...if it has been addressed previously, please forgive this newbie.
How is the engine braking system used? On the shift lever, there is a "B". I have read the manual (p 146), but I don't really understand it. Is it like downshifting a manual? If I were coming up to a stop sign, could I move the lever to "B" and slow down the car without using the brake? The salesman told me that it could only be activated at speeds less than 30MPH, but the manual doesn't seem to say that. Any help would be greatly appreciated. One reason I decided to get the Prius was all the positive comments on this site and the expertise of the members. I felt much more comfortable with my decision to buy after reading these posts. Thank you so much.
 

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I would only use B for going down long, steep hills. Emphasis is on long and steep.

When you press the brakes, the battery is charged. On a long, steep hill, the battery will get fully charged, then the brake pads do the braking. If those friction brakes overheat, you could have brake fading and lack of stopping power.

In a conventional car, you would downshift for long, steep hills so the engine does lots of the braking. B mode does something similar.

B mode is unneccesary for other driving conditions.
 

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Congratulations on your new car!! It must be very exciting to own a 2007--makes my 2005 seem old. I've never shifted into B in all this time. Of course the roads in my area aren't exactly steep. Enjoy your car and drive safely. :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks you so much for the info. Having this car is so different from anything I've ever had. In fact, I went from an SUV to my Prius! It's a little scary, I'm afraid I'll push the wrong thing and break it. I shouldn't admit this, but I have never actually read a car manual before. I have done nothing else today but read, read, read! Anyway, thanks again and I look forward to all the good stuff I'm going to learn from this forum about my beautiful little car! By the way, it's a Pkg 1 and is magnetic gray metallic with the dark gray cloth interior. It just sparkles in the sun! Well, I'm going to go out and look at it some more before it gets dark!
 

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I found my car to be a little weird and scary in things like how to start it, the reverse gear beeping, the shuddering ias it transitioned between the ICE (internal-combustion engine) and electric motor at certain speeds, etc. But after a week or so, I got used to those things and its just a normal car that emits low emissions and gets awesome mileage.

As to B mode, here in hilly Vermont, I use it for going down hills, both steep and moderate to steep. It does act very much like downshifting a manual gear, and it surely helps save friction wear on the brakes. However, if the battery charges completely (eight green bars on the Energy screen), the ICE will spin noticeably higher to prevent overcharging. Even if I haven't made it to the bottom, at that point I shift back to D and rely on the brakes as the spinning makes me quite concerned even though some other drivers leave it in B as there's still a moderate regen effect after a fully charged battery. As a result, my brakes have about 70% wear remaining at 24,000 miles, pretty normal for most cars, but abnormally high for a Prius.

Note to Evan: yea, it tried it for a whole half mile in B after a fully charged battery and I just couldn't take the high spinning...it may be old-think, but I don't think an engine should have to rev like that for so long. But there definitely was a moderate regen effect, almost as much as before a fully charged battery.
 

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Interesting about your brakes, Wayne. My last checkup (32,000) on my '05 had at least that much brake left. Ok, not hilly here in southern NJ, and I've never used B, but brakes don't seem to be an issue for me.

New tires at 36,000. Now up near 38,000.

We were in Vt (west rutland) this past week. Great weather, and the colors were delightful! :) YAY!

Anyone wants a fun place to stay with a dog, try http://www.pawhouseinn.com.

I highly recommend it - my fourth annual trip there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I talked to several dealers, but the guy at Sandy Springs Toyota was able to get me what I wanted the fastest. I ordered it Sunday, Oct 1, it got to the port on Wednesday and I picked it up Saturday night.
 

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Sanny said:
Interesting about your brakes, Wayne. My last checkup (32,000) on my '05 had at least that much brake left. Ok, not hilly here in southern NJ, and I've never used B, but brakes don't seem to be an issue for me.

New tires at 36,000. Now up near 38,000.

We were in Vt (west rutland) this past week. Great weather, and the colors were delightful! :) YAY!

Anyone wants a fun place to stay with a dog, try http://www.pawhouseinn.com.

I highly recommend it - my fourth annual trip there.
Yeah, its the hills and because I chose not to use B after full battery charge, but the brakes feel just like new...work great.

Glad you enjoyed VT...it was a fantastic weekend and I got a hike in at Snake Mtn. overlooking Lake Champlain. Snow's in the forecast for Thurs. though :eek:

I will be sure to let my friend know about Paw House Inn...she just loves those pampered pet places. I'll bet your pooch had a great time there (again)!
 
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