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September US Hybrid Sales Ease Off August’s Pace

US hybrid sales in September eased off their record August pace of 23,307 units, dropping down to 19,180. Although Toyota continues to lead the hybrid pack with 68% of all hybrid sales, the biggest sales gainer from August to September was Ford’s Escape hybrid, which saw its sales climb to its highest level to date of 1,808.

The Honda Accord hybrid also posted its highest monthly sales yet with 2,352, an increase of 16 units from its prior record set in August. The Civic hybrid dropped well back from its August pace of 4,146 to post 1,916 units. The Insight continues along at its steady pace, with 83 sales.

Toyota saw declines in sales of all three of its hybrids on an absolute basis from the prior month. The Prius sold 8,193, down from 9,850; the Highlander hybrid sold 2,715, down from 2,975; and the RX 400h sold 2,113, down from 2,607. Sales of all Highlander and RX 330/400h models were down from August, however, and the hybrids actually increased their share of total model sales in September.

The Highlander hybrid represented 28% of all Highlander sales, and the Rx 400h represented 25.7% of RX 300/400h sales.

Ford’s Escape hybrid posted a significant gain in share within the model, jumping up to 15% in September sales. This resulted from both an increase in sales of the hybrid, as well as a decrease in overall Escape sales.

Hybrid_sales_sep05_1_3 Hybrid_sales_sep05_2_2
Hybrids as Percentage of Total Sales
September 2005
AutomakerHybridsTotal LDV% Hybrids
Toyota 13.021 178,417 7.3%
Honda 4,351 121,163 3.6%
Ford 1,808 227,051 0.8%
Hybrids as Percentage of Model Sales, September 2005
Toyota Highlander 2,715 9,684 28%
Toyota Rx400h 2,113 8,212 25.7%
Honda Civic 1,916 30,165 6.4%
Honda Accord 2,352 33,884 6.9%
Ford Escape 1,808 12,052 15.0%



Is the Honda Accord sales really 0?!?! Close to 0?!!?

Or, is there an error in your spreadsheet or chart?


^ The 2,382 isn't showing up in the charts, although it is listed in the key.


The numbers are great for this month if you compare them to the past month. Toyota sold less vehicule but they are still at around 7.5% . The biggest drop is the honda civic but who wants to buy the current model when the new incredible model is just around the corner. I'm sure the honda civic hybrid sales will skyrocket in october.


Could you tell us which of these numbers were limited by supply (such as the Prius) and which ones were limited by demand in your future reports on sales?
I've seen people correlate gas prices with hybrid sales, even though it is well known that the Prius sales numbers (for example) are supply limited, and so correlations like that don't mean much.


The drop (especially for the Civic) can be easily attributed to the fact the manufacturing plants are shut down in August to changeover to the new model. In the case of the Civic, I saw one story saying dealers had a 9-day supply of Civics. It's very likely that they effectively sold out of Civic Hybrids at all the major dealerships already, and Honda has said it will be the middle of October before the 2006 Hybrids hit dealer lots. November/December will be much more telling months for the Civic.

Mikhail Capone

We can only imagine what Prius sales would be like if there was no supply restrictions and no waiting lists...


Thanks for spotting the glitch on the 3d chart!



It looks like the aggregate chart (stacked chart on left) needs to be fixed too!


Thanks! My eyes must be going. :-)


Also something to remember is that with the new tax incentive program people might be waiting till the first of the year and they buy thier hybrids. three months isn't that long to wait to save a couple grand.

Does anyone else feel like there is something screwy with this new tax incentive. Only 60,000 of each model. So by maybe June - August next year. No more tax rebate for the Toyota Prius. I am not big on conspiricy theories but this sounds like a way to take away the tax incentive for Toyota and honda quickly so that Ford and the others can have a short competitive advantage when they start up thier hybrid models.



I think you're right, and I think it's really savvy policy. It helps stimulate Americans to by hybrids (good!) and it helps stimulate all companies to introduce more choices in the hybrid market (good!) all the while especially encouraging American companies to increase their number of hybrids (good!) and throwing a financial bone to an American industry (good!) that is hurting and could leave a lot of bluecollar workers in their 50s and 60s without pensions if the industry gets left behind (very bad!)

So, I think it's smart policy. It also helps to mitigate the total outlay, since it's really a crapshoot how many people will buy hybrids next year and the gov't does have to find the money to pay for it.

I wonder if a car company could agree to "sell" you the car now and take payment on Jan 1 2006? If the tax incentive is $2600, maybe for a $1500 or $2000 premium? This way the dealer gets more, the consumer pays less, the dealer doesn't get his money for 3 months, but the consumer gets the car now.


An other benefit of the tax writeoff incentive is that it offsets the technology cost of the hybrid components themself's. So, buying a hybrid will cost the same as would purchasing a non-hybrid of the same vehicle/specs would.

In other words: With the tax break, the 2006 Civic Hybrid should cost about the same as the 2006 Civic Sedan EX.


Ford and gm are holding a massive hammer over the politicians heads and they know it and are waiting for it to fall.

They forced ford and gm to keep worker benifits too lush for far too long and kept both companies from firing american workers and hiring elsehere. Now the burden is HUGE so huge the government itself cant afford to take it over when they fall.

To give you a clue when ford and gm finaly fall as they plan to do it will break everything. It will make enron look like a lemonade stand.

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