Toyota’s Hybrid technology has chalked up its eighth million sale world wide as the technology becomes increasingly widely accepted.
The Prius, which led the launch of petrol-electric vehicles with its launch in Japan in 1997, has now expanded to 30 Toyota and Lexus vehicles incorporating Hybrid technology.
In New Zealand the Prius, Prius c, Prius v and Camry have Hybrid technology as well as the Lexus CT, IS, ES, GS, NX and RX models.
Toyota started exporting Hybrid vehicles to Europe and North America in 2000, while New Zealand’s first Prius arrived here in 2001.
The take-up of Hybrid technology has accelerated with more focus on fuel saving and lower emission regulations worldwide and the introduction of more models to meet market demand.
The one millionth Hybrid was sold in 2007, 10 years after the launch of the first Prius. While 2009 saw sales double to two million and the three million mark was reached in February 2011, with unit four million coming in April 2012.
Now Toyota is adding another million Hybrid sales in less than 12 months. The fifth and sixth million were sold in March and December 2013.The seven million mark was reached in September last year and the eighth million in July.
Eight million Hybrid vehicles have had a considerable positive impact on the environment. Toyota has calculated that at the end of July, its Hybrid vehicles have emitted 58 million fewer tons of CO2 emissions than would have been generated by pure petrol engined vehicles of a similar size and driving performance.
Toyota also estimated these eight million Hybrids have saved about 22 million kilolitres of petrol compared to the amount used by petrol only powered cars of a similar size.
Perhaps not surprisingly, since it led the way, the Prius is the most successful single model with more than 3.5 million sales, followed by the Prius c with just over one million, while the Prius v and Camry Hybrid have both recorded more than 500,000 sales. Toyota New Zealand’s Camry and Camry Hybrid models are sourced from Altona, Australia, which started Camry Hybrid production in 2009.
The largest selling Lexus Hybrid worldwide is the RX sport’s utility vehicle with over 317,000 while the CT200 has reached nearly quarter of a million.
Globally, Toyota is expanding its Hybrid range all the time with more SUVs and even light commercial vehicles being added to the Hybrid model mix.
Hybrid technology encompasses all of the components necessary for the development of environment friendly vehicles and facilitates the use of different fuel combinations.
Non hybrid vehicles are also benefitting from Toyota’s continuous focus on advancing these technologies.