Overall, Toyota reported a 5.5 percent decrease in year-on-year sales for the month of December and a drop in annual sales in 2010 of 0.4 percent compared to 2009. However, many of the automaker's hybrid models bucked the declining trend and displayed some decent improvements.
Toyota's hybrid sales in December rose 14.2 percent, hitting 20,522 units by month's end. For comparison, the automaker sold 17,964 hybrids in December 2009. For the year, Toyota's hybrid sales dropped by 3.3 percent compared to 2009, but the Prius posted its best-ever December sales of 15,253 and logged a total of 140,928 units sold in 2010. The Lexus HS 250h tallied 10,663 sales in 2010 and Toyota's luxury brand posted total sales of 26,219 hybrids for the year, up 20.5 percent over the figures reported for 2009.
On a different note, even the diminutive Smart fortwo had one heck of a December, logging 570 total sales, an increase of 170 percent over November's figures. That didn't help the brand's overall sale much, though. In 2009, 14,595 Fortwos were sold, compared to just 5,927 in 2010, a drop of 59.4 percent.