Toyota today announces that cumulative global sales of its hybrid vehicles topped the 6 million unit mark as of December 31, 2013, reaching 6.072 million units. The latest million-unit milestone was achieved in the fastest time yet for Toyota, taking just nine months.
Helping mitigate the environmental effects of vehicles is a priority at Toyota. Based on its belief that environment-friendly vehicles can only truly have a positive impact if they are widely used, Toyota has endeavored to encourage the mass-market adoption of hybrid vehicles.
As of this month, Toyota sells 24 hybrid passenger car models and one plug-in hybrid model in approximately 80 countries and regions around the world. Furthermore, within the next two years, Toyota will launch a total of 15 new hybrid vehicles worldwide, including the new "Harrier Hybrid" in Japan on January 15 and the new "Highlander Hybrid" in the United States in the near future. Toyota will continue augmenting its product lineup even further and increasing the number of countries and regions where it sells hybrid vehicles.
Toyota calculates that as of December 31, 2013, Toyota hybrid vehicles have resulted in approximately 41 million fewer tons of CO2 emissions—believed to be a cause of global warming—than would have been emitted by gasoline-powered vehicles of similar size and driving performance. Toyota also estimates that its hybrid vehicles have saved approximately 15 million kilolitres of gasoline compared to the amount used by gasoline-powered vehicles of similar size.
In August 1997 in Japan, Toyota launched the "Coaster Hybrid EV" and launched the "Prius"—the world's first mass-produced hybrid passenger vehicle—in December. Since then, Toyota hybrid vehicles have received tremendous support from consumers around the world.
Toyota has positioned hybrid technologies that enable the use of different fuel combinations, including the component technologies necessary for development of various environment-friendly cars, as core environmental technologies for the twenty-first century. Toyota therefore plans to continue working to raise performance, reduce costs, and expand its product lineup—including that of non-hybrid environment-friendly vehicles—to create vehicles that are popular with consumers.