Ford Expands Flex-Fuel Efforts in US, Europe
Hiccups on the Road to Hybrid Acceptance

Total US Hybrid Sales Drop in October; Prius Sales Climb 21%

In a month of overall declines, Prius sales still increased.

US hybrids turned in their worst aggregate sales month since June, when all the models now on sale were first concurrently on the market, and the third-lowest of the year. October saw 16,934 units sold, 27% down from August’s peak of 23,307, and 12% down from September’s 19,180 units.

With the overall decline in combined light duty vehicle sales of 14% from September to October, however, hybrids managed to nudge up their total market share very slightly from 1.45% in September to 1.48% in October.

Toyota not only was once again the leader in hybrid sales in October, it increased its combined unit sales to 14,173 from 13,021 the month before, a jump of 8.8%. The Prius did the heavy lifting, with 9,939 units sold (a 21% increase from the prior month), while the Highlander and Rx400h hybrids saw slight declines to 2,330 and 1,904 respectively.

Hybrids represented 8.2% of all Toyota vehicles sold in September, up from 7.3% in September.

Honda saw the most severe drop in hybrid sales, with the Civic hybrid plummeting to only 231 units in advance of the roll-out of the new 2006 Civic hybrid. In August, sales of the Civic hybrid reached 4,146 units.

The Honda Accord hybrid dropped down to 1,266 units, and the Insight to 37. Despite those drops, however, Honda hybrids increased their share of all Honda light duty vehicles sold in September to 4.0%, up from 3.6% the month before.

Ford also saw a drop in sales of its Escape hybrid, down to 1,227 units in September. That pushed hybrids as a percentage of Ford total sales down to 0.6%, from 0.8% the month before.

Hybrid_sales_oct05_1 Hybrid_sales_oct05_2



Hybrids represented 8.2% of all Toyota vehicles sold in September, up from 7.3% in September.


Interesting data. Without the context of total car sales, it's a bit confusing though. Were total car sales down in October? By how much in terms of percentages?

Ultimately, the questions I care about are:
* What percent of the total US Fleet is hybrid?
* What percent of miles driven are driven by hybrids?

If sales of hybrids went down but sales of other cars went down even more, then hybrids are still gaining.


^ So the yellow line in the bar chart is all light duty vehicles; I didn't pick up on that until looking a second time.

Thanks for the info!

Mikhail Capone

It was expected that the 2005 Civic hybrid would get a massive drop; people are waiting for the 2006 model.


^ Absolutely.

The question I wonder about is, what impact does that have on the sales of similar hybrids (Prius, Accord, Lexus)*. Should it boost others like the Prius, since the consumer wants a car in this class but doesn't want to buy a soon-to-be obsolete Civic which will lower the resale value? Or, does he just not shop at all, thereby lowering the sales of the Accord and Lexus?

Or, is the impact marginal, and not really relevant?

* Similar == 4/5 seat non-SUV auto.


I tried to trade my 2004 HCH for a 2006. All the dealers in the north Georgia area, including Atlanta offered much below Blue Book on mine and wanted MSRP (with a bunch of junk added) for theirs.

I don't plan on buying another car until the dealers get their shit together. After all, I'm happy with my 2004.

Who knows, Maybe the auto engineers will wake up and stop producing such trash.


Makes some sense to me when you talk about their hybrids. They are pretty sad copy. Toyota and Hond seem
to be on track to make some real good things happen.
Ford and GM with their kind of a hybrid tech are missing the point.



I wish Americans would stop being so power hungry. Even the new Toyota Yaris is expected to only get 40MPG on HWY.

Why do we need a 110HP engine for a itty bitty car? Hwo about 75HP? I am sure it would provide more than enough get up and go.

Jeffrey from Baton Rouge

little shop

That is true, 110hp for that size car would have put it at a sports car in the 80's. A 3cyl 75hp would be fine. My dad had a full size Dodge VAN that had an engine with I think 115hp (6cly) in the 70's.

Cameron Dell

I have two VW diesels that are 59 hp and 81 feet pounds of torque. Other than there a little slow going up big hills and too slow to cut anyone off and cause a lot of road rage I love them. If you have the power you will be temped to use it. I bought a honda Del Sol a few years back. I started driving like a idiot at times. So sold it and went back to the VW and being a courteous driver again. It's like drugs once your hooked its hard to kick the habit. There's just no hope for me being able to buy 3 cylinder 85 mile/ gallon car in North America. Not with all this addition to power.


As a Prius owner the sports/SUV hybrids have always seemed a little silly to me. If you really want a hybrid, why not go for the Prius?

Maybe that is what most people are doing.

Interesting that the Civic Hybrid lags. I wonder if it is supply driven, especially now at the product year changeover? OTOH, I think they did get more attention as Prius waiting lists grew. Perhaps a bigger Prius supply hit the Civic.

I looked at a civic, but the thing that decided it for me is that I needed a fold-down rear seat for hauling stuff.

little shop

The drop in sales is due to model changovers at both companies, 05 to 06 at Toyota and new to old Civic and Honda. Jan or Feb will be have greater sales then any month past. Honda will be putting out more hybrids as a percentage of Civics then before as well.


"A 3cyl 75hp would be fine."
Do you have any idea how much a 3cyl engine vibrates?
It has to have 110hp be cause at that price point it is competely with a whole lot of used cars. If it had 75hp most people would just go for the 5 year old Taurus.

little shop

3cyl does not vibrate that much in a well engineered car. The Insight has 3cyl and does not vibrate much. Its like any other 4cyl car in terms of engine noise or maybe less.


I owned a 1957, 3cyl, 2cycle SAAB which had about 35-40 hp. It was a cute car about the size and shape of a 1957 VW Bug. Blue smoke out the exhaust was a reminder of the 2cycle design. It had no ac. It was a bit underpowered although we drove it on interstates. I loved it although it's engine selfdestructed at about 57000. A dealer refused to repair it under warranty. That's another story. I agree: today's cars are too powerful. We drive a 4cyl '99 Camry which got a high of 39mph (highway) on our last trip in Sept/Oct '05. I set the cruise at 60.


"Do you have any idea how much a 3cyl engine vibrates?
It has to have 110hp be cause at that price point it is competely with a whole lot of used cars. If it had 75hp most people would just go for the 5 year old Taurus"

Maybe you haven't read the impresive comments on Toyota's own 68hp 3cyl 1L engine in both the aygo and the european yaris. The engine is even smoother than the previous generation 4cyl. Case in point, with modern engineering any vibration ina 3cyl can be surpressed.

My problem is why toyota chose the largest engine in the yaris range for the US when they have the more economical 68hp 1L and 88hp 1.3L. On second thought, I think its a marketing decision since it would be hard picthing the yaris against the cheaper priced hyndai accent which by the has 110hp.


I want to get some snaps of 'itty bitty car'.
You can send these snaps on

If anyone is thinking to sale his/her 'itty bitty car' (in good condition), kindly contact.

Also if you provide me price of new car, it will be gramercy for this.

Joseph M.

I just love the Hybrid Technology. Originally I didn't understand what a Hybrid was. I read a lot. talked to a lot of people. Discovered that the Prius Hybrid is by far the best vehicle made. Here are some interesting links that helped me learn about the technology of the Hyrbrid. and a movement for Plug in Hybrids. Every question is answered.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Many Links And Information:


My friend and I are doing a business project that compares the Toyota Pruis to other hybrids in the market. We are wondering where the data in this article was found. Any leads? Our time frame is from 2004 - current. Thanks

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