Thursday, June 7, 2007

Toyota worldwide hybrid sales top 1M

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Toyota Motor Corp.'s cumulative sales of hybrid vehicles totaled 1.047 million as of the end of May. Of those, nearly 345,000 hybrids were sold in Japan, while 702,000 were sold abroad, the company said in a statement.

The Prius is the clear leader, with a total of 757,600 units sold since its 1997 introduction in Japan. Toyota began selling the Prius in North America, Europe and other places in 2000. Last year, the model made up more than 40 percent of hybrid sales in the U.S.

Demand for hybrids, which deliver superior mileage by switching between a gasoline engine and electric motor, has soared amid higher oil prices and greater consumer concern about pollution and global warming.

The Prius, which gets 55 miles a gallon on combined city and highway driving conditions, has been enormously popular as a mid-size sedan, which is a best-selling vehicle category.

Toyota officials say hybrids will continue to be important, even with the advent of more futuristic technologies like the electric vehicle and fuel-cells that run on hydrogen.

Source : YahooNews




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