|US hybrid sales. Click to enlarge.|
Reported US sales of light-duty hybrid vehicles almost doubled in March 2007 from the year before, reaching 34,637 units—an increase of 94% from March 2006. Total light duty vehicle sales in the US increased 0.8%, with a 4% increase in passenger cars and a 1.9% decrease in light truck sales.
These results, which do not include hybrid vehicles sold by GM as the company does not yet break those out, push the share of hybrids in monthly new light-duty vehicle sales over the 2% mark for the first time. With some 1,542,229 light duty vehicles sold, according to Autodata, hybrid sales represented at least 2.25% of the total. Adding GM’s results in would push the figure higher.
|Hybrid share of new US LDV sales. Click to enlarge.|
Although all automakers had a strong month for hybrid sales, Toyota was the engine for the sharp increase, with Prius sales shooting up to 19,156 units and the Camry hybrid posting 5,144 units. The two models accounted for 70% of total US hybrid sales. (Earlier post.)
The Highlander Hybrid sold 2,501 units, down 16% from March 2006. The Lexus Rx 400h sold 1,471 units, down 40% from the prior year. The Lexus GS450h sold 181 units, representing 92.8% of the combined GS 430/GS 450h models sold, and 8.6% of all GS models (including the GS 300).
Toyota’s calendar-year-to-date hybrid sales in the US totaled 61,635 units, an increase of 68% over the same period last year.
|Hybrids as components of their model family sales. Click to enlarge.|
The Honda Civic Hybrid posted 2,813 units, up 26% from March 2006, and representing 9.5% of all Civic models sold. The Accord Hybrid posted 385 units, down 34% from March 2006, and representing 1.1% of all Accord models sold. Honda also sold 1 Insight, even though production has ceased on the model.
Ford had a strong month for its Escape and Mariner hybrids, with 2,523 units sold, an increase of 50% from the year before. The hybrid models represented 12.9% of total combined model sales.
Nissan saw its sales of the Altima Hybrid, offered in only eight states, increase to 462 units in the car’s second month on the market.