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Friday, June 1, 2012

GM Volt Beats Plug-In Prius, Leaf in U.S. sales

The Chevrolet Volt was the best-selling rechargeable auto in the U.S. in May, topping Toyota’s plug-in Prius and Nissan’s all-electric Leaf hatchback.

Deliveries of the GM plug-in sedan more than tripled to 1,680 units from 481 a year earlier, bringing the yearly total to 7,057. Toyota sold 1,086 of the Prius plug-in version, introduced in March. That is down from the cars initial month of sales in April of 1,654. Nissan Leaf sales slid 55 percent to 510 cars. This is compared to a year-low in April of 370. Total YTD Leaf sales are 2,613.

Leaf sales have dropped the past two months as the Yokohama, Japan-based company has changed how it sells the car, now available in all 50 U.S. states, said Al Castignetti, vice president of Nissan’s North American sales.

“I have huge dispersion issues,” Castignetti said in an interview today. “In places like California, dealers have pretty good inventory, but I’ve got states that literally have no Leafs, and we’ve got to address that.”

Sales of the Leaf will rise to a minimum of 1,000 a month by July, he said.

The four-model Prius line from Toyota City, Japan-based Toyota, which includes the plug-in version, is the biggest seller among all electric-drive autos, with sales rising 210 percent to 21,477 in May and 73 percent to 107,504 for the year. The standard Prius sold 13,053, while the C and V sold 3,693, and 3,645 respectively.

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