• Aug 12, 2010
2010 Lexus HS 250h – Click above for high-res image gallery

Last week, we informed you that sales of the Toyota Prius had sharply dropped off this July, falling some 30 percent from the reported numbers a year ago, yet Toyota was pleased with the results. While it seemed rather odd that Toyota was satisfied with a drop in sales, the fact that the Cash for Clunkers program kicked off in July of 2009 helped to make some sense of the decline.

Though sales of the Prius may have fallen, the company is surely pleased with its continued dominance in the hybrid market. Toyota and Lexus have combined to capture 73.9 percent of U.S. hybrid sales for July, and surely that's something to be pleased about. The seven hybrid models from Toyota and Lexus accounted for 17,504 sales in July, with the Prius capturing a rather astounding 59.6 percent of the hybrid market for the month.

Ford placed a far distant second to Toyota by reporting just 2,896 hybrid sales in July, while Honda remained planted in third with a total tally of 2,475 hybrid sales. So, while Prius sales may have dropped off compared to last year, there's no denying that Toyota still retains its position atop the hybrid market.



[Source: Green Car Advisor]


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  • 33 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Lincoln really needs to get the MKZ Hybrid to market.

      Anyone who buys a HS over the MKZ Hybrid should seek counseling.
        • 4 Years Ago
        http://www.lincoln.com/mkz/2011mkzhybrid.asp

        Better acceleration than the hs250 & better mpg!

        Less reliable? i dunno, maybe. Everyone seems to love the Ford Fusion long term, i would venture to guess that it's the best car Ford has put out in some time. Not sure about the hybrid.

        Looks? i guess it's up to your opinion. I think the hs250 looks stumpy and weird. And i think Lincoln interiors are manly and awesome.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I disagree.
        1. Lexus dealer experience
        2. More tech features than you can shake a stick at
        3. Styling that stands out, for better or worse
        4. Reliability that may likely be much better
        5. Higher resale value

      • 4 Years Ago
      Hasn't this always been the case? How is this news?
      • 4 Years Ago
      17,504 sales in July alone.

      That is an amazing figure since sooooo many people out there were POSITIVE that hybrids would never sell.

      Now it is never smart to extrapolate yearly sales from just one month, but even if it averages out to 1/2 that number over the year, that's 100,000+ hybrid sales a year.
      Detroit would kill to be selling an extra 100k cars every year.
        • 4 Years Ago
        amazing that they are selling modestly and that they only really sell in high numbers when government welfare is involved? you bet.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yup, 2,000,000+ Prius sold to date, and every last one of them bought with gob'ment welfare funds.

        You betcha!

        /s
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wowza, that's impressive. I'm surprised Honda's sales were so close to Ford's, seeing as how the Fusion is a FAR superior car to both the Insight and Civic Hybrids. I suspect the $4-7k price difference plays a key role in that, but still.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Bloke

        I've actually owned several cars over the years, and am looking to purchase a new one in the near future...I'm not a punk kid blindly bashing a car I know nothing about.

        The company I worked for last year had an Insight in their test fleet that I was given for a week to try out. Most of the other employees in my department shared the same sentiments I did.

        Ride comfort is absolutely terrible, as was cabin noise. If/when the engine decides it wants to wake up from its permanent nap, when revs get into the 4-5-6k range, everything starts rattling and you feel like you're entering a time warp. At 50mph.

        Getting up to speed on highway on-ramps is borderline dangerous. I had the pedal floored the entire ramp and made it up to 62 by the time the merge lane was up. Speed limit was 65, traffic flow was maybe 75.

        There were several times where I took it up some steep hills in LA just for kicks, and it flat out couldn't make it up. I made it about half way, the car ceased to move (while the engine was still screaming attempting to muster it further up the hill); I had to put it in neutral, put the hazards on, and back down the hill. That's pathetic.

        One of my coworkers took it on a trip with 3 of his family members to the Grand Canyon from the LA area, and said after about 2-3 hours of driving, the seats were so uncomfortable he wanted to turn around, take it back to work, and drive his own car on the trip (00 Golf). The passengers wouldn't have minded, either.

        That's nice that you like it, but you're one of the few. I would never even think of buying an Insight of a Civic Hybrid, and I encourage all of my friends and family not to either. It's a flat out terrible car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "Ride comfort is absolutely terrible, as was cabin noise. If/when the engine decides it wants to wake up from its permanent nap, when revs get into the 4-5-6k range, everything starts rattling and you feel like you're entering a time warp. At 50mph."

        You must have had a Monday morning car. Mine is very quiet, the only noise comes from when the engine is having to work extremely hard - but that's typical of a 1.3 litre engine. Being European I'm used to cars of this cylinder capacity. At 50mph mine is very composed and the ride is fine. Again, you're not going to like it if you're used to wafting along in a water-bed style Buick or Suburban, but it's pretty average for a B-segment machine.

        "Getting up to speed on highway on-ramps is borderline dangerous. I had the pedal floored the entire ramp and made it up to 62 by the time the merge lane was up. Speed limit was 65, traffic flow was maybe 75."

        I always find these statements curious about Americans, given that they all drive so slowly in any case compared to Europeans. I tend to drive in typically European fashion - I have no trouble getting up to 65mph to merge, and it'll cruise all day at 80 without any trouble. Like many Europeans, we make small cars work to earn their keep - and the Insight does that perfectly. But at 70-80mph, fuel economy does drop to low 40's mpg, which is typical of many small cars. I get the most out of it in the 35-60mph range, where it'll easily achieve 50+mpg.

        "That's nice that you like it, but you're one of the few. I would never even think of buying an Insight of a Civic Hybrid, and I encourage all of my friends and family not to either. It's a flat out terrible car."

        Well everyone's entitled to their opinion, and I'll now give you mine. I myself find I have many queries about the car - from Honda owners and others alike. For what this car is - a 1.3 litre B-segment liftback - it offers a well balanced combination of attributes and its extremely economical. But Americans aren't used to 1.3 litre B-segment cars. For years they've been plied with a facility for dirt-cheap motoring, and as such they prefer large, boat-like appliances more suited to their roads. What other B-segment cars are worth buying in the States as decent all-rounders? The German Fiesta and Japanese Fit ... that's about it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Its kind of astonishing considering Honda has its own dedicated hybrid car and Ford does not.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Just goes to show you how bad the Insight really is. I wouldn't own an Insight if someone straight up gave it to me for free. I probably wouldn't even have the heart to sell it to some sucker either, I'd have to either go all Office Space on it and leave it in the woods, or send it off a cliff somewhere...
        • 4 Years Ago
        "The insight, from all the reviews i've read, sounds like a torture chamber of a car. Slow, bumpy, rattly, inferior to the Prius in almost every way. Quite a bit cheaper... but.. overpriced in my opinion!

        There are also people who love their Geo Metros and think they're fine cars.

        Well, the sales numbers of the Prius speak for themselves."


        Middle Way, every word that comes out of your mouth tends to be meaningless and you never have any experience yourself. Is the Insight as good as a Prius back to back? No. But it's also considerably cheaper and also slightly smaller. And having spent 25 years in the world of motoring, I know a bad car when I drive one - such as the Chevrolet Cobalt, for example, which was incredible given it was given a decent chassis to begin with. Sales numbers don't correlate to the best in the market: the Aveo was the best-selling B-segment hatch sold in the US, yet it's far from being the best in its class.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The insight, from all the reviews i've read, sounds like a torture chamber of a car. Slow, bumpy, rattly, inferior to the Prius in almost every way. Quite a bit cheaper... but.. overpriced in my opinion!

        There are also people who love their Geo Metros and think they're fine cars.

        Well, the sales numbers of the Prius speak for themselves.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The Insight had the second highest single model sales. Ford's numbers include the Escape, the Milan and the Mariner. Here is a breakdown of hybrid and diesel sales by model.

        http://www.hybridcars.com/hybrid-clean-diesel-sales-dashboard/july-2010.html

      • 4 Years Ago
      "Toyota and Lexus have combined to capture 73.9 percent of U.S. hybrid sales for July"

      Toyota has done a good job carving out this niche market. Despite the bad press (which based on recent reports seems to be more and more unfounded) their sales keep rolling.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Im with you on what you said. They still selling very. They still have tons of work ahead of them as far as reputation goes. GM just reported a 1.3 billions in profit. That means one thing. they are doing a heck of a job''

      • 4 Years Ago
      No surprises here. Of course AB has to prominently show the ugly HS instead of the most popular hybrid ever, the Prius.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The prius is ugly too tho.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I dont think the HS is "ugly" it looks decent.. good IMO. I see them all the time here in NY. stand out among the rest of cars.
        • 4 Years Ago
        eye of the beholder

        They have a green autoblog. I doubt they have an agenda against green cars if that's what you're implying.

      • 4 Years Ago
      The Prius is still the poster child for hybrids, and it will take a while to unseat that. Especially when few others even have hybrids. Even the coming offerings from GM and Nissan will take time to ramp up, and the Nissan is not (or should not be) in the same comparison to the Prius.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Big shocker! And since selling hybrid is such an important part of Toyota, it's likely that Toyota will continue to be #1 in hybrids for as long as there are hybrids.

      Still a little shocked that Ford topped Honda, but that's what you get when the Insight is such a stinker and Ford also has the Escape Hybrid.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like it. *bald eagle soars by gracefully in the distance*
      • 4 Years Ago
      I can just imagine jaybird36 kicking and screaming throwing a childish temper tantrum.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Toyota owns the Hybrid game
      • 4 Years Ago
      Toyota is a biggest giant of auto industry.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'll stick with the Insight. The Klingon battlecruiser dashboard and lack of chrome finish on the interior details won't appeal to some, but it's very easy to achieve a far higher rate of fuel economy than its Government rating - especially in the 35-60mph range. I can average between 50-55mpg (US) on a main road at these speeds. For a car of this size Honda have managed to get a good blend of handling and ride quality. And significant price savings over the Prius to boot. All in all, a very underrated machine.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Conspiracy theory - what aspects of the ride do you consider poor? B-segment cars generally are engineered to handle well at the behest of the ride quality, but Honda have managed a good medium with the Insight. I drive mine 60 miles daily along a variety of road surfaces - it doesn't float like a Citroen, but it doesn't crash through rough surfaces like an EVO either. The seats are supportive and the steering is light and responsive. Still, what do I know? I'm only an owner with 25 years of motoring experience.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Ahhh your a Brit. Could very well be a different suspension, tires and or tuning over there. Over here harsh beyond belief. And I reiterate, the sales numbers speak volumes.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Ride Quality? Really? I'm a Hybrid fan and a Honda fan but the new Insight hybrid rides so poorly
        I consider it at the least, laughable. Ugliness aside if this car had ride quality it's sales would have quadrupled. Honda predicted 20K sales annually. I think the market has spoken.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I will grant you though that as a European, we have a different idea of ride quality than Americans do. Just take a ride in a Crown Victoria and then climb into my e38 7-series fro an easy comparison.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "It's a price savings compared to the Prius but it's also 3/4 the size and 3/4 the technology. With the Prius you get your money's worth."

        The Insight uses a B-segment platform but roomy enough inside for a family four. I'll happily take "3/4 the technology", given that it's also 3/4 the price for the same level of equipment. And with the fuel economy I'm seeing, that's almost akin to a decent turbodiesel at freeway speeds. As an Insight owner I'm delighted with the vehicle, I can't sing its praises enough and the fuel economy is tremendous.
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