The Toyota Prius has been the top-selling vehicle in its home market of Japan since its redesign in 2009 for the 2010 model year, due partly to a series of incentives created by the Japanese government to promote fuel efficient vehicles – more specifically, hybrids. Those incentives ended in September, leading many to wonder if Toyota's hybrid hatchback could maintain its stranglehold atop the sales board.
Apparently, the answer is yes. According to data provided by the Japan Automobile Dealers Association and the Japan Mini Vehicles Association, Toyota managed to sell 21,400 Prius hybrids in November, more than enough to earn the fuel-sipper the top sales spot over the second-place Honda Fit (16,677 units).
It seems that the end of hybrid vehicle subsidies did take something of a toll on Prius sales, however. Though still on top, sales of Toyota's hybrid hatchback were down by just over 20 percent when compared to the same period one year ago, when the Japanese government's incentives were in full effect. Still, Toyota's green jellybean has enjoyed 18 months at the top and still has quite a few carlengths on the Fit, and that's nothing to be sneezed at.
[Source: The Mainichi Daily News]