Toyota Prius generated most online buzz from January to April 2013

Article by Anita Panait, on May 28, 2013

The Toyota Prius was the most discussed hybrid/electric vehicle online from January to April 2013, resulting to $14.5 million in total media value, according to a new study from a social analytics company GenSent Insights. At far second is the Honda Fit with $4.5 million in online media value. Rounding up the top five most discussed hybrid/electric vehicle online are Chevrolet Volt with $3.1 million, Tesla Motors’s Model S EV with $3 million, and the Honda Insight with $2.9 million.

The New York-based social analytics company tracked the value of online media and exposure for 10 different hybrid and electric vehicles through proprietary natural language processing technology.

GenSent determined a brand's reach by placing a dollar value on the overall level of discussions for a specific period, according to company president Don Damore. Tracking different online venues like Facebook, YouTube and Google, the company computed a vehicle’s media value by monitoring online conversations that mention a certain brand or topic.

For example, when Top Gear's Jeremy Clarkson mentioned the Prius in a Twitter post in March 2013, the vehicle reached a peak of 8,371 twitter mentions, Damore disclosed.

For the January-April 2013 period, the Prius gained almost 86,000 Twitter mentions, which is over thrice the amount the other nine hybrid/electric vehicles received. The Cadillac ELR plug-in hybrid generated $1.2 million in media value in just five days in January 2013, when it grabbed the “Eyes On Design” Award at the Detroit auto show.

GenSent noted that nameplates also differed visibly in the channels in which they were mentioned. For instance, the Honda Insight and the Honda Fit generated around 96 percent and 80 percent, respectively, of their media value from video sharing websites. The Nissan Leaf, on the other hand, generated 94 percent of its media value from Twitter. The Cadillac ELR and Tesla Motors both generated 72 percent of their media value from news media sources.

The “V” in the new Toyota Prius V implies the versatility of the Prius family as it is adaptable enough to cater to the needs of families with active lifestyles. While it is still underpinned by the same platform and powered by the same Hybrid Synergy Drive technology, it offers over 50 percent more cargo space than the current Prius. Thus, the new Toyota Prius V offers a good blend of excellent roominess, refined style as well as outstanding aerodynamics.

Although the new Toyota Prius V has a low coefficient of drag value (0.29 Cd), it is still able to feature convenient packaging. Instead of being just an elongated version of the Prius, the new Prius V represents an evolved shape – a proof that it was designed from the ground up.

On the exterior, the new Prius V features a rounded yet sleek appearance. Thanks to its extended roofline, the new Prius V was able to don the triangular silhouette that become symbolic of Prius. The front end of the Prius V is marked by sharp-edged headlamps, wind-slipping aero corners as well as a larger under grille. On the rear end, the new Toyota Prius V features a refined backdoor panel and combination taillights. The rear end is also marked by roof spoiler that helps enhance air flow.

Meanwhile, the interior of the new Toyota Prius V offers a whole new level of spaciousness, flexibility and comfort, making it a perfect fit for active families. Passengers would surely enjoy that fact that the new Prius also offers a high seating position as well as ample head room and rear leg room. In addition, the new Prius V offers a 38-inch couple distance. Located behind the rear seats is luggage space that could accommodate around 34.3 cubic feet of cargo, as accessible through a low, wide-opening rear hatch.

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