Toyota Prius is undoubtedly the most famous hybrid car in the world. It is already one of the most technologically advanced cars offered on the market and the third generation Prius now offers even more sophisticated features with the introduction of a new Safety Pack option.

Toyota's Pre-Crash Safety system (PCS) and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), which use radar-based controls to help the driver avoid road accidents happening. Both systems are joined by a list of other style, luxury and comfort features.

The Safety Pack is priced at £2 975 and includes:

  • Pre-Crash Safety system
  • Adaptive Cruise control
  • Leather upholstery
  • Dusk-sensing headlights
  • LED low beam headlights with washers
  • Electrochromic auto-dimming rear view mirror
  • Water-repellent front side window glass

2010 Toyota Prius Pre-Crash, 1 of 3
2010 Toyota Prius Pre-Crash, 2 of 3
2010 Toyota Prius Pre-Crash, 3 of 3

The PCS system uses a millimetre-wave system and lane detection cameras to monitor the road ahead and detect the risk of a collision. If it judges a high possibility of an impact, it first alerts the driver with a buzzer and warning light on the dashboard. If the driver does not respond, it then activates the front seatbelt pretensioners and initiates emergency braking to minimise the consequences.

ACC uses the same radar system to automatically adjust vehicle speed to keep a set, safe distance from the vehicle ahead. When a slower vehicle is detected in the road ahead, ACC slows Prius by reducing engine power and, if required braking. If it cannot slow the vehicle sufficiently, an alarm is sounded to alert the driver. One the road ahead is clear, ACC automatically returns the car to its pre-selected cruising speed.

Another features of the luxury pack are the low beam LED headlights, which further highlight the style of Prius. They last significantly longer than conventional halogen bulbs (+>1 500 hours) and high-intensity discharge lights (+3 000 hours). Furthermore, the headlights come with integrated headlamp washers and an automatic, dusk-sensing function.

Last, but not least, the package includes dark tinted rear privacy glass available as an option with the T Spirit grade, priced at £265.

With these new options, Toyota Prius looks better, feels better and it is significantly safer. The price is very reasonable for such a long list of extras.