By Damon Lowney
In an apparent shot back at Ford’s increasing market share of electrified vehicles and claim that it accepts more Prius trade-ins for its own hybrids than any other car, Toyota has flexed a muscle and played the numbers game to put the Blue Oval in its place.
Leaning on its hybrid market dominance in California, the Japanese automaker stated that six out of 10 hybrids sold in the Golden State are Toyota models. And it keeps coming: Year-to-date through May 2013, Toyota sold five times more hybrids than Ford. One of every two hybrids in California is a Prius model. In addition, Toyota notes that it has sold 1.5 million Prius vehicles in the US, 90-percent of which are still on the road today.
Want more? We’ll let Bill Fay, Toyota’s group vice president and general manager of sales lay the smack down:
“The hybrid industry has become competitive, but our wide range of hybrid vehicles continue to deliver high value and strong attributes to both new and loyal customers. With sales of 5.3 million hybrids globally and over two million in the US, we are the undisputed leader in hybrid vehicle technology and remain committed to building on our momentum and growing the acceptance of hybrid technology throughout the US.”
And to think Toyota and Ford just ended their collaboration to make hybrid trucks together.
On one hand, those are indeed very impressive statistics, but there’s a flip side, as well. If 6 out of 10 Toyota hybrid sales come from California, that’s more ammunition that hybrids still aren’t a factor for most American new car buyers. As of 2012, only about 3.3 percent of new cars sold in the US were hybrids, of which California sales would clearly represent an inordinately large percentage. So while Toyota may be looking to take upstart Ford to the gas-electric woodshed, it’s clear larger struggles remain on the road to hybrid acceptance.
Source: FULL ARTICLE at Autoblog