Did you think Hybrids were only for celebrities, city councils and the environmentally friendly nuts? Think again. Toyota announced today that worldwide sales of Toyota hybrid vehicles have topped the 1 million mark. Toyota has now sold around 1,047,000 hybrid cars since 1997.
One million Hybrids in 10 years (although the first few years were limited to Japan only). Toyota launched the iconic Prius in Japan in 1997 and further expanded the market to North America, Europe in 2000. The Prius made its way to Australia in late 2001.
Hybrid has become a success story for Toyota Australia which last month sold 380 Prius vehicles sales. Toyota Australia’s senior executive director sales and marketing, David Buttner, argues that increased availability of the Prius, as well as greater environmental consciousness have led to increase sales.
One million hybrids have driven the earth, and now the big question? Has it made any difference to the environment? Toyota thinks so. Toyota believes that Hybrid vehicles have greatly contributed to reductions in CO2 emissions, by producing approximately 3.5 million fewer tons of CO2 compared with the same class gasoline-powered vehicles of similar size and driving performance.
This is only the begining for the Hybrid revolution. Toyota plans to double its hybrid line-up and will aim to achieve annual sales of 1 million units by 2010.