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  1. Thanks, I tried that and got no low battery warning !
  2. What kind of battery life do you guys who use the smart card get ? I've had mine for 3 months and it's telling me it's low. Manual says a year I think. While i'm asking, do all Lexus dealerships charge the same for scheduled maintenance (does Lexus corporate enforce it) or can they charge whatever ? Trying to decide if it's worth shopping around. Thanks !
  3. Thanks, that's very interesting info. I like trying to understand all the complicated stuff going on with the car. Sorry, I should have been clearer...I meant that the AC running the battery down to two bars forces the ICE on... as you mentioned
  4. I prefer to have my audio files on a USB stick over playing off my phone, however a chunk of songs are old imports and my metadata is a mess (track numbers all over the place, weird filenames at times) which makes it hard to navigate in the car esp since there's no search feature. I tried organizing by folders but the car seems to look at the metadata over the folders even when I tell it to look at folders. Ideally creating a playlist on my laptop and putting that on the USB stick would be best but I don't know if that can be done. Any suggestions ?
  5. Thanks for the post...I'll take a look although I feel like the more I look into addressing it the more I'll notice all the creaks :/ I would be curious to hear what the dealership is able to do on the next service
  6. Yeah it's all a bit of a mystery at times. As far as when to use the battery for acceleration from standstill, I find that it's not worth using it if I'm on an uses too much of the battery charge. However I definitely use it on flat and downhill sections. I really enjoy picking certain routes that I know I can go a while on just battery 🙂 Otherwise I find the best thing to do is just use the ICE to get up to speed rapidly and then use the battery to coast. I'll also accelerate up 5-10 mph above the speed I want and then coast back down to the speed limit (as long as someone isn't behind me). Finally I find that when the battery is above 50% I'll get up to speed in a more spirited fashion because the car will use a combo of ICE and battery to get up to speed and that seems the most efficient method. Might as well use the battery ! I find it loses about two bars of charge anytime I stop it for more than an hour anyway I wouldn't worry about wear and tear...Toyota has really nailed the technology. I try not to think of it as a regular engine anyway Does anyone know the max time between turning the car off that the car won't insist on firing up the ICE initially ? I did a very brief errand today and it didn't turn on the ICE just to warm up. That was a 5 min break. I'd assume anything more than 10-15 minutes will lead to the car firing up ICE for 15 seconds on startup.
  7. Agreed that I need to stop micromanaging everything...already learned to not use up all the battery charge before finishing a drive. Just to clarify, the ICE is running but the car is stationary and the energy diagram indicates that no battery charging is happening. I'd also love stronger regen, there are definitely times (downhill braking or emergency due to stop light or someone cutting me off) where I know I'm actually using the brakes vs regen.
  8. Yeah, I haven't used the flappy paddles at all yet...seems a bit incongruous with the hybrid nature but I suppose I should try more spirited driving since the little I've done has been suprisingly good. It seems like, when the car is above 50% charge, it uses the battery and engine to accelerate when pushed spiritedly so perhaps I'm underutilizing the feature when I could be getting "free" performance from the battery. I agree I'm doing trying to milk the most efficiency out of the car. Occasionally the AC being on will cause the car to fire up the ICE while in traffic and it drives me a bit nutty...need to let go haha
  9. I’ve had the car for coming up on 3 months now and am still very smitten. A real change from my 2002 BMW 330i and a testament to the advice given on this forum. The car has so much right with it that I find myself focusing on the things that are so slightly wrong haha Things I don’t like or wonder about. Thoughts appreciated ! The centre console (armrest and shifter area) rattles and general creakiness. Every other area of the car is solid as stone but this area that you touch a lot (my elbow rests on it) isn’t ? Very odd. But I just try to ignore the rattles and creaks. I’ve seen some explanatory DIY fixes on here…might try that. Occasionally after the engine is warmed up, I will come to a stop or am coasting but I can tell the engine is still on. However the engine is not charging the battery ? EV light isn’t lit. Battery isn’t fully charged. I get the sense there is some maintenance the car is doing (sometimes happens after a while at highway speeds, using the engine a lot). Or maybe my car needs servicing How the car thinks the engine needs to be on for 15-20 seconds to “warm up” if I’m running errands and get out of the car for 20-50 minutes between trips. Engine is already warm. Very minor quibble. Things I love: The car’s ability to combine seemingly incompatible qualities. Feels solid but also light and easy to interact with. Seats are sooo comfortable but grip you…I have found other cars to have seats I slide around on. The car feels very spacious and roomy but also wraps around you. I’ve found other cars to be too roomy or too cramped. The planted feeling of the car. It has a great combination of comfortable ride with very capable handling. The feeling of quality and thoughtful design in most every area of the cabin. Great fuel economy. I sooooo enjoy sitting in traffic and not wasting petrol. I can be in the worst traffic and still get great efficiency. I get about 48 MPG I used to not run the AC in last car unless it was really hot but now that I can run it off the hybrid battery, I use it whenever I feel like :) How efficient the hybrid part is. Only using the engine until car is a little warm (remarkably little time taken in summer) and seamlessly monitoring things and turning things off and on as needed. Using the regenerative braking. I really enjoy charging the battery back up this way. And changing my driving to maximise efficiency. When I first got the car I overused the battery part by driving really slow but then I realised that often the battery was low when I got into it the next day and it would need to have the engine on for a while to charge back up the battery. So I started just driving normally and the efficiency has gone up. How much more relaxed it makes me about driving. No longer racing around to get to the next stop light faster than everyone.
  10. Thanks for this ! Really great info....hybrid efficiency definitely seems different to regular driving efficiency. Usually I try to hit the brakes as little as possible and hit them hard when needed. Now I'm trying to anticipate and use light brakes to regenerate and coast into red lights.
  11. Picked up the car today. 2013 Sonic Titanium. Don't think I would have seriously investigated the car without the feedback on this forum so thanks ! Can't believe it was only 6 weeks ago I posted on here, feels much longer. I missed out on a few ones that sold quickly or where something odd happened. Very frustrating at the time but I really feel like I got the best possible example. Mechanic I hired for pre-purchase inspection tried his very hardest but couldn't find a thing wrong with the car. He said he couldn't find any leaks or even signs of anything leaking and being cleaned up. Early days but I like a lot about the car. Like other posters mentioned, a test drive isn't an adequate representation of the miss all the nuances and the subtle well-roundedness of the car. - I was considering white, silver, grey or blue (if I got F sports) but am so glad I got the sonic Titanium. I love how the colour changes in different light (it's like 3 diff car colours in one), the matte quality of the paint, even the way it feels. Also how it shows off the lovely body lines. Each time I look at the car I see a new body line that I like. I was that guy today looking back at my car 3X as I walked away. At least the gf wasn't there to laugh at me - the cabin is so serene, looking around at all the other loud cars with people racing around to get to the stop light first...just seemed a bit silly. Will have to work on fast growing superiority complex. - lots of nice, thoughtful touches (the way the doors open with the notches being noticeable but not clunky, seat moving back to let me out when engine turned off, how quiet the cabin is, how the main cabin light dims down and up, auto most everything) - thoroughly enjoying driving in ECO mode and trying to max out efficiency. I'll compare with normal mode to see how much difference I'm making with the careful driving. I'll try Sports soon...two of my tyres are brand new so need to wear them in a little first. Some questions - I'd like to get the best MPG as possible. I remember reading that you want to get up to speed pretty quickly and then use the electric motor to coast on the battery. Should I be flooring it (going into power mode in the area where the tachometer usually is) or accelerate with the motor but slowly, keeping it in the eco area ? - the manual says I'm supposed to have a key number plate. I got the two regular keys but not this. I suppose I should ask the dealer about it important ? - is it normal for a hybrid to lose charge overnight (esp if cold winter nights) because both this and the corolla hybrid I rented have lost at least 20% battery charge overnight. I park outside, maybe it's less bad in a garage. - can you switch the outside temp gauge to F from Celcius ?
  12. This is such a fantastic detailed response...tons of great insights, thanks ! My friend had an E39 530i and that car was what got me interested in my e46 330i....especially the engine. I considered the F20 M135i but it just seems like the performance will be dormant 95% of the time. And I'm tired of all replacing all the rubber and plastic parts on BMWs.
  13. Thanks ganzoom, it's good to know about things that will disappoint. Is there nothing that can be done to address or lessen the massive throttle lag ? Sport mode and sports on the transmission don't eliminate it ?
  14. Wow, thanks to everyone for the responses. If the car is half as good as the detailed and thoughtful replies here...I'll be very happy. I especially appreciate the comments from people with BMW experience ! I think it's important to go into the test drive with the right expectations. When I first got my 330 I drove it hard a lot of the time. Now I find myself just cruising most of the time. Sometimes I'm even trying to maximize fuel economy which is kinda crazy on this car since it makes very little difference. I think I could make the shift to enjoying just maximizing efficiency 95% of the time and accepting the compromise of sluggish throttle response for the other 5%. If I put the car in sport and select sport on the transmission does that sharpen the throttle response or does it just simulate gear changes ? For a couple of the responses it seems it does tighten it up...hopefully enough to eliminate issues approaching a roundabout or driving on a hilly, curvy mountain road ? Finally what are the pros and cons of going F sport vs non-F Sport ? I don't care too much about the exterior looks of the F sports package and I'd actually prefer not having staggered wheels (not like I'm going to use the performance advantage of bigger tyres) but if there's an actual performance advantage to F sports (better transmission performance, faster etc) then I could be swayed. I've heard that the F Sports seats don't work well with the heated seats ? Thanks again !