Wednesday, March 21, 2012

PriusC makes its debut!

Toyota says smallest Prius sales outpace Volt, Leaf

By Chris Woodyard, USA TODAY
Updated 3d 12h ago

PR Newswire
Toyota says its newest, cheapest hybrid, the subcompact Prius c five-door hatchback is selling well in its first few days in showrooms.
Of course, it doesn't hurt that the car, priced under $19,000 and averaging 50 miles a gallon, arrives in the middle of a gas-price run-up. In case you didn't squint, that's Prius with a little c at the end -- the smallest member of what Toyota calls the Prius "family."

Toyota says: "In its first three days on the market, it sold 1,201 units, making it one Toyota's fastest-selling vehicles and eclipsing Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf sales for the entire month of February."

That's kind of an odd comparison, considering Volt and Leaf are plug-ins costing far more. Volt, for instance, costs twice as much as a Prius c. Prius c is a conventional hybrid just like the regular Prius -- a gas engine charges the battery. You can't plug it in in your own garage to use less gas.

"A number of factors drive the auto market, and fuel prices is one of them," said Bob Carter, general manager of the Toyota Division. "With 53 miles per gallon in the city ... the timing for Prius c couldn't be better."

During the first half of March, the four Prius variants -- c subcompact, v wagon, the plug-in hybrid and the plain, ol' original Prius -- accounted for sales of 9,821. Last month Prius sales totaled 20,593.

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