|Toyota sells 4 million hybrids and counting
Toyota have just announced they have sold 4 million hybrid vehicles worldwide since they were first brought to market in 1997. The real news however is that in the last 14 months, Toyota has sold 1 million, edging ever closer to the 1million vehicles-a-year mark.
It took Toyota 10 yrs to sell their first million hybrids, two years for their second and one and a half for their third. Rather than being a gimmick, hybrids are becoming an increasingly strong segment of Toyota’s overall project range. This year hybrids have made up 15% of Toyota’s overall sales.
They calculate that their hybrids have saved 26m tonnes of CO2 emissions that would have been produced by similar-sized gasoline-powered cars since 1997.
Currently Toyota produce eighteen different hybrids and sell in 80 different countries. Most are made in Japan with only some being assembled abroad. This is set to change as Toyota seeks to bring its costs down in the face of competition, producing an increasing number abroad. Nissan’s Leaf for example is making sure it won’t be straightforward to easily defend a market leading position.
Toyota are aiming to sell one million hybrids a year by 2015 or earlier.
Their success is important in establishing the EV market as a viable business and we wish them every success with the pioneering investment they made on this new industry.