With the central London congestion charge zone extending west to take in an even greater slice of the capital next week (earlier post), sales of the Prius—which is exempt from the daily £8 charge—in London jumped up 135% in January from the year prior.
Other London boroughs and authorities in other parts of the UK are also queuing up to follow Richmond council’s lead and raise parking permit charges in line with vehicles’ CO2 output. In Richmond’s case, this means a Prius owner pays six times less to park than the owners of vehicles in the top band. (Earlier post.)
Toyota Centres in London have reported exceptional demand, helping push January’s Prius sales up by 135% compared to the same month last year. This sustains a momentum that has pushed full year figures up by more than a third in 2006 to a new record of 5,017 units in the UK, up from 3,745 units sold in 2005.