Toyota has sold more than 10 million hybrid vehicles globally as of January 31st 2017. The milestone includes both hybrids and plug-in hybrids and comes only nine months after total hybrid sales reached 9 million at the end of April 2016. At the center is the Prius, although it was once a blip on the radar.
“When we launched Prius, no one even knew what a hybrid was, but, thanks to early adopters, hybrids have ridden a wave of success into the mainstream,” said Takeshi Uchiyamada, Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors, Toyota.
Uchiyamada, considered the father of the Prius, further spoke his feelings.
“We are grateful to each and every one of our customers who have helped us achieve this important [global] milestone,” he said.
The environmental impact is equally as substantial. As of January 31st 2017, Toyota estimates their hybrid vehicles, as an alternative to gasoline vehicles of similar size and performance, resulted in approximately 77 million fewer tons of CO2 emissions and nearly 7.66 million gallons of gasoline saved. Toyota believes the results validate the effectiveness of hybrid technology when addressing greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental concerns.
“The Prius stands as an icon for sustainability and efficiency, and is a shining example of what you can achieve when you have the right idea to help solve a problem,” said Bob Carter, Senior Vice President of Automotive Operations for Toyota Motor North America.
Sales continue to grow for Toyota as does their commitment to eco-friendly vehicles.
“Hybrids remain an important part of our lineup of vehicles, with over 246,000 units sold last year,” Carter said. “We have seen continued demand with the release of the RAV4 Hybrid variant of the popular compact SUV, accounting for nearly 13 percent of its total sales volume in 2016.”
Over the past 60 years, Toyota has produced more than 30 million cars and trucks in North America. The automaker operates 14 manufacturing plants, 10 of which are in the United States. In the U.S. alone, Toyota employs more than 34,00 people and operates nearly 1,500 dealerships.
Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and resides in Detroit, Michigan.