February 8, 2017


Article image
Toyota Prius - 20,000 sales in Australia (Prius i-Tech shown).

* Iconic Prius to reach 20,000 sales this month*

 * 20th anniversary year for Prius*

 * Total hybrid sales pass 75,000 vehicles*

 Toyota has announced two significant hybrid milestones in Australia with landmark achievements for Prius and the company's entire offering of hybrid vehicles.

 February marks the 20,000th sale of the iconic Prius since the first of four generations of this hybrid technology flagship arrived in Australia in 2001.

 Prius, which is the world's best-selling hybrid vehicle with total sales approaching four million cars, celebrates its 20th anniversary this year following its debut in Japan in October 1997.

 Toyota has also clocked up cumulative hybrid sales of 75,000 vehicles in Australia, including Camry with more than 42,000 sales and the Prius hatch (20,000). The Prius c city car has passed 8,000 sales and the seven-seat Prius v has attracted more than 3,700 customers.

 Corolla - Australia's best-selling passenger car for each of the past four years - joined the hybrid brigade in June 2016 with a single highly specified hatch that has already achieved more than 1,200 sales.

 Toyota Australia's executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said no other global company is further advanced in developing next-generation automotive technologies and encouraging their widespread use.

 "Toyota continues to make advances with conventional petrol and diesel engines, as well as hybrids, electric vehicles, fuel-cell cars and other technologies," Mr Cramb said.

 "The original aims were focused on energy conservation and diversification of fuel sources, yet our latest line-up demonstrates that hybrid cars can also offer chassis dynamics that make driving fun," he said.

 "In fact, all Toyota's hybrid cars are strong mainstream alternatives to traditional petrol and diesel powertrains."

 The first-generation Prius was shown as a concept car at the 1995 Tokyo Motor Show and released in Japan two years later as a production model, with a 1.5-litre petrol engine working in tandem with an electric motor.

 It won Japan's Car of the Year award and went on to be acclaimed around the world as the forerunner of a new era of automotive environmental consciousness.

 The completely restyled second-generation Prius was launched at the New York International Auto Show in 2003. It achieved even better fuel economy, and its "triangle silhouette" made it the forerunner of hybrid design.

 The third-generation Prius, again restyled, adopted a larger 1.8-litre petrol engine and was once more named Japanese Car of the Year from its 2009 debut. It marked a breakthrough for hybrid technology, which had matured to the point where it appealed to a much greater number of customers around the world.

 In early 2010, Toyota broadened its line-up by introducing hybrid versions of the best-selling Camry sedan. Two years later, the Prius nameplate was expanded into a family with the arrival of the Prius c city car and the seven-seat Prius v. 

 The fourth-generation Prius, which was launched in Australia last year, offers substantially improved efficiency and driveability, with cutting-edge styling and chassis dynamics that make it fun to drive.