Toyota Motor Sales is temporarily suspending model year 2006 Prius sales to government and rental fleets and cancelling existing order agreements due low inventories and an anticipated surge in retail demand.
The company is advising commercial fleet buyers that availability will remain limited with longer than normal order-to-delivery timing (“possibly in excess of six months”).
Due to Toyota’s exceptionally low retail dealer days supply position and an anticipated increase in future retail Prius demand stimulated by the recent passage of the Federal Highway Bill (retail tax credits & HOV lane eligibility), Toyota Motor Sales, USA Inc. is not in a position to accept MY06 Prius fleet production orders specific to government & rental fleets.
This regrettable but necessary action is being taken as a result of the company’s need to address the extreme shortage of Prius availability at the dealer retail level.
Commercial fleet orders will most likely need to be spread out over several order/delivery months as we manage customer demand against our established monthly production guides.
Toyota will restore fleet availability to government and rental buyers once production volumes are sufficient to meet both retail and fleet order demand.
(A hat-tip to Jack Rosebro!)