Toyota Prius 2010Back in 2010 Toyota released the long awaited newly redesigned Prius. It was (and still is) widely considered the bench mark, and the epitome, of world class, NASA grade, Hybrid wonder-mobile engineering. The original Prius brought us out of the automobile dark ages. The 2010 Prius vaulted us into the future.

Sometimes just the right combination of events happen that makes a professional car buyer like me take notice. Like the stars aligning, or the perfect storm, it does not happen so often. Such is the time right now to buy your next high quality used 2010 Prius. Here are the 3 reasons:

1/ Oil Prices are Down

A funny thing happens when gas prices fluctuate, even just a little; when gas prices go down, the price of hybrids goes down, when gas prices go back up, the prices of hybrids goes up. The relationship is inextricable. I’ve taken notice of it throughout the years going back to as early as 2007-08 when all hell broke loose when gas prices spiked. Suddenly there were no Priuses on the dealer’s lots. There was a waiting list on new hybrids and if you were lucky to find a used one you would have had to pay a big premium for it. And then gas prices went down, demand slowed and like magic there was a glut. The truth is that car buying consumers have short memories when it comes to matters such as these. People simply stop buying hybrids when gas is cheaper and dealers are willing to make a deal. It’s happening right now. Don’t wait till June when gas prices notoriously rise.

2/ Lease Returns

2010 marked the year when the long awaited third generation Prius redesign occurred. Prius fans flocked to the dealers to get their hands on one. Quite a few, it happens, were 36 month lease packages. And now, three years later those leases are up and voila they are turning up everywhere. I am at the dealers lots and they are flooded with them and the dealers are ready to deal. These lease returns will most likely continue for the short run, but right now the picking is great.

3/ Cheap Toyota Financing

Toyota is known for their financing and the rates are very attractive as of April/May 2013. Currently Toyota is offering a ridiculous 1.9% for 60 months on a high quality used 2010 Prius. Your FICO score will have to more than 720 in order to qualify for this rate. If you are in need of knowing what your score is you can check out Credit Karma. It is a free service that I recommend to all my clients.

So it is with these three events taking place simultaneously that we have a rare opportunity to make a really incredible deal on the Prius.

Of course in order to know that a used Prius is top quality you still need to screen it for the following:

  • Accidents (Carfax is necessary but will not be an absolute)
  • Highway miles (Watch This Video)
  • Dealer Maintenance
  • Original Owner (Trade-in as opposed to an auction car)
  • All service records
  • Garage Kept


Greg Macke is a professional car buyer and consumer advocate. He has worked closely in the industry to improve the buyer’s experience.