Fourteen years after the launch in the UK of the first-generation Prius, Toyota has sold its 100,000th hybrid there. Sister brand Lexus is closing in on 50,000 UK sales, achieved since the debut there of the RX 400h in 2005.
The 6-digit honor went to an Auris Hybrid Touring Sports in top-of-the-range Excel trim, produced by Toyota Manufacturing UK (TMUK) at its Burnaston plant, near Derby. The hybrid system includes a 1.8-liter VVT-i gasoline engine manufactured by TMUK at Deeside in North Wales.
Hybrid is at the core of Toyota’s investment in UK manufacturing, with Auris and Auris Touring Sports models built there for export worldwide.
Today there are six different Toyota hybrids on sale in the UK, covering the market from compact superminis and family hatchbacks to seven-seat MPVs. Expansion of the range has gone hand-in-hand with accelerating sales; global sales of Toyota group hybrids are nearing seven million, with Prius now among the world’s most popular cars.
Sales of the hybrid-powered Auris are set to overtake those of gasoline and diesel versions combined and Yaris Hybrid is taking an increasingly large share of overall sales of the supermini.
Notably, a fleet customer will be taking delivery of the 100,000th UK hybrid, reflecting the advantages of low company car tax rates and running costs and high reliability.