December 2011 Dashboard: Sales Still Climbing

Note: This month’s dashboard was delayed due to lack of data availability until today.

The HybridCars.com monthly sales dashboard is a collaboration of HybridCars.com and Baum & Associates, a Michigan-based market research firm focusing on automotive issues including the hybrid and electric vehicle market.

Hybrid sales for December 2011 were at their highest since March, which was the last month before the Japanese earthquake/tsunami affected product availability.

Prius volumes in December were also at their highest since March – augmented in that now Toyota is including new members of the Prius family under a single category – and were also higher than all other months since August 2009.

The availability of the larger Prius v and the forthcoming Prius c will certainly lead to higher volumes.

Hybrid sales for the last quarter of 2011 exceeded the comparable level in 2010 by almost 5 percent. Even with the availability issues for much of the year, hybrid sales were only 2 percent shy of 2010.

Beyond the Prius, other major hybrids include the Hyundai Sonata, Honda Insight, and Lexus CT200h, two of which are new in 2011.

Plug in vehicles achieved their best month ever (by a significant margin), which indicates that limited availability has been the primary factor in sales since December of 2010.

The percentage changes for electric cars for comparisons especially under CYTD 2010 (and other columns) might look high to excessive – but while they are correct, don’t place much stock in them as sales started at a very low level in December 2010.

Note also that the Mitsubishi i battery electric car has been included this month.

While we believe the concern over the safety of the Volt has been overwrought, consumers seem to agree as sales in December reflected greater availability rather than safety concerns.

LEAF sales met expectations for 2011, but need to increase in the new year to meet Nissan’s goals.

The yen/dollar relationship will complicate this effort, but the importance of the vehicle suggests that Nissan will take a financial hit in order to increase sales. Of course, volumes for 2013 are expected to be much higher given the launch of production in Tennessee.

Diesel volumes showed growth in 2011 with the VW Jetta leading the pack and performing well for the year. Mercedes showed strong volumes across a number of models, as did VW/Audi.

December 2011 Hybrid Car Sales Numbers

Hybrids sold in the U.S. (December 2011): 31,100
Hybrid Take-Rate: 2.51 percent

U.S. hybrid sales for December 2011

Model Units vs. last month vs. November 2010 CYTD vs. CYTD 2010
Toyota Prius 17,004 11.8% 8.7% 136,463 -3.2%
Lexus CT 200h 2,259 28.4% n/a 14,381 n/a
Hyundai Sonata 1,907 10.7% n/a 19,673 n/a
Toyota Camry 1,797 146.2% 46.0% 9,241 -36.6%
Lexus RX400/450h 1,233 32.9% -19.7% 10,723 -29.0%
Ford Escape 1,080 -4.5% 23.1% 10,089 -9.8%
Buick LaCrosse 982 44.4% n/a 1,801 n/a
Ford Fusion 888 -10.6% -40.3% 11,286 -45.8%
Honda Insight 690 -7.9% -57.8% 15,549 -25.8%
Honda Civic 565 12.3% -37.6% 4,703 -35.9%
Honda CR-Z 564 84.9% -35.6% 11,330 115.9%
Toy. Highlander 563 74.8% -40.7% 4,549 -39.0%
Linc. MKZ Hybrid 434 -8.6% 2.4% 5,739 381.5%
Lexus HS 250h 274 32.4% -75.6% 2,864 -73.1%
Chevy Silverado 195 427.0% 71.1% 1,001 -46.5%
Porsche Cayenne 89 -36.4% -56.8% 1,571 356.7%
Buick Regal 86 n/a n/a 123 n/a
Cad. Escalade 79 163.3% -39.7% 819 -32.3%
Infiniti M35h 54 17.4% n/a 378 n/a
BMW Hybrid 7 51 104.0% 104.0% 338 234.7%
GMC Yukon Hybrid 49 133.3% -59.5% 598 -51.0%
Chevy Tahoe 40 42.9% -68.0% 519 -63.6%
Mercedes S400HV 37 94.7% -11.9% 309 -67.6%
Mazda Tribute 36 0% -25.0% 484 -26.1%
Altima 34 -38.2% -94.4% 3,236 -51.8%
Lexus GS450h 33 50.0% 10.0% 282 -7.5%
VW Touareg Hybrid 29 38.1% 38.1% 390 1,757.1%
Porsche Panamera S 26 n/a n/a 52 n/a
GMC Sierra 10 25.0% -77.3% 164 -68.6%
Lexus LS600hL 9 80.0% -47.1% 84 -34.9%
BMW X6 3 -400.0% -50 43 -82.7%
Chevy Malibu Hybrid 0 n/a -100.0% 24 -94.0%
Mercedes ML450 0 n/a -100.0% 1 -99.9%
All hybrids 31,100 19.1% 8.7% 268,807 -2.2%
All vehicles 1,238,939 24.9% 8.7% 12,734,356 10.2%

December 2011 Plug-in Electric Car Sales Numbers

Plug-in cars sold in the U.S. (December 2011):2,741
Plug-in Take-Rate:0.22%

U.S. plug-in electric sales for December 2011

Model Units vs. last month vs. November 2010 CYTD vs. CYTD 2010
Chevrolet Volt 1,529 34.2% 369.0% 7,671 2,253.1%
Nissan LEAF 954 42.0% 4,921.1% 9,674 50,815.8%
Smart ED 182 80.2% 5,966.7% 388 12,833.3%
Mitsubishi i 76 1,800.0% n/a 80 n/a
All plug-in cars 2,741 56.0% n/a 17,813 n/a
All vehicles 1,238,939 24.9% 8.7% 12,734,356 10.2%

December 2011 Clean Diesel Car Sales Numbers

Clean Diesels sold in the U.S. (December 2011):9,658
Diesel Take-Rate:0.78%

U.S. clean diesel sales for December 2011

Model Units vs. last month vs. November 2010 CYTD vs. CYTD 2010
VW Jetta 3,528 7.3% -16.8% 51,530 15.5%
BMW X5 1,120 46.0% 39.7% 7,378 -6.9%
Passat 1,078 13.4% n/a 4,032 n/a
Volkswagen Golf 799 17.0% 7.4% 9,768 69.0%
Mercedes ML320 768 -7.2% 86.4% 5,020 81.5%
VW Touareg 591 27.4% 1,455.3% 3,633 152.1%
Mercedes GL320 573 -40.2% 81.9% 5,782 65.2%
BMW 335d 340 10.7% -20.0% 3,583 -5.8%
Audi A3 329 22.3% 25.6% 3,611 3.9%
Audi Q7 242 11.5% -49.2% 3,654 5.4%
Mercedes E320 187 -11.0% -40.8% 2,767 195.0%
Mercedes S350 79 18.8% n/a 240 n/a
Mercedes R320 24 71.4% -11.1% 474 34.3%
Jeep Gr Cherokee - n/a -100.0% 152 -91.0%
All clean diesels 9,658 4.1% 16.2% 101,624 27.4%
All vehicles 1,238,939 24.9% 8.7% 12,734,356 10.2%


View Past Dashboards:
  • bret

    And what happens with cng honda civic gx sales!

  • Em two

    Does Sonata sales include the Kia Optima?

    Why sales of the Tesla Roadster and the Fisker Karma are not reported?

    Thx

  • MrEnergyCzar

    I assume they will separate out the Prius family into separate categories…. Nice to see the plug-in category finally growing..

    MrEnergyCzar

  • Yegor

    If look at cars.com for availability across the whole country the sales were probably:
    Prius V: 3,500
    Prius: 13,500
    Sonata Hybrid: 1,100
    Kia Hybrid: 700

  • Yegor

    Em two,

    Tesla Roadster and the Fisker Karma sales are in dozens and hard to obtain because the companies do not disclose them.

  • Yegor

    Honda Hybrids sales fell hard :( – official MPG is underrated plus competition is very strong from new fuel efficient ICE cars.

  • Yegor

    Anyway the good part is that December 2011 Hybrid + Electric sales (33,841) were up 17% vs December 2010 Hybrid + Electric sales (28,937) and significantly outperformed the overall market 8.9% !!!

  • John K.

    If “Clean Diesels” get a listing, surely CNGs deserve their own listing — other than electrics, they are the cleanest vehicles out there! Check out:
    http://automobiles.honda.com/civic-natural-gas/reviews.aspx

    Honda Civic GX/Natural Gas for 2012 gets 27/38/31 miles per gallon (gasoline-gallon equivalent), with an increased range of up to 190 miles. Hopefully, Honda will offer a hybrid version someday, which would make it even cleaner, require less refueling and increase range even further.

    Natural Gas Civics are available in California, New York, Utah and Oklahoma. In CA, they get one of those desirable white HOV decals. That ought to make them hot sellers for the next few years.

    More info here:
    http://automobiles.honda.com/civic-natural-gas/

    (most of the above is for newbies that may not know about CNG vehicles)

  • KMCoates

    bret,
    Honda Civic CNG sales have been about 1K/year since it was first introduced; they hope to double that this year. Barely a drop in the bucket.

  • FamilyGuy

    For 2012, I’d like to see the Prius Liftback in it’s own category and the Prius v and Prius c in their own categories as well.

  • Lucy

    Traded my Prius in for a Volt December 30th. Had been holding out for the plug-in Prius but the range wasn’t as good. The Volt is more luxiurious than my Prius was, and the super hi-tech features, like connectivity with my smart phone, are really fun. Interior layout is good, too. Starting in 2010 the interior of the Prius went south. Gotta have lots of storage and cup holders and up till 09 the Priuses had it! Definitely getting in the mid 30 miles per charge, depending on outside temperatures. Biggest bummers: no wiper on the back window, heavy doors, small back passenger access (bumping heads getting in!), and almost no difference when you flick on the high beam headlights!

  • Yegor

    The new stricter corporate average fuel economy standard (CAFE) kicks in 2012. I hoped that it would force automakers to sell more fuel efficient cars (including Hybrids and Electrics) but it looks like it is not going to happen :(

    “According to a new study from University of Michigan researchers Kate Whitefoot and Steven Skerlos, automakers probably will still have incentive to churn out bigger, hulking cars. And, once again, this footprint loophole could undermine the regulation’s effectiveness. What the researchers found was that, by and large, it would be more profitable for automakers to keep building larger and larger vehicles.”
    :(
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/cafe-loophole-could-lead-to-bigger-cars/2011/12/14/gIQA3bGLuO_blog.html

    :( I think that article should go on the front page of HybridCars and PlugInCars websites to raise awareness of the new CAFE loopholes!

  • Marco

    Toyota Camry hybrid sales will be growing fast during 2012.

    To me the different models of Prius are ok in one line. As for example Jetta also have different models with the same name, and are presented in one line.

    Are Lexus HS250h sales accurate? there looks to be a typing error.

  • reparacion centralitas

    Hybrid and electric cars are the future in ”car-world” . The sales are going better and better. I was searching a long time an article like this one to see the sales exactly and I am really exited for how well things are going.Thanks a lot for all the informations.

    Greetings Alex

  • reparacion centralitas

    Hybrid and electric cars are the future in ”car-world” . The sales are going better and better. I was searching a long time an article like this one to see the sales exactly and I am really exited for how well things are going.Thanks a lot for all the informations.

    Greetings Alex

  • Anonymous

    Iran has 2.859 million CNG vehicles, but US has only 120,000 vehicles running on CNG, so it may be difficult to list CNG sales in 1 section.

    However I see many CNG powered Vans, Transit Connect and Impalas in Chicago. Slowly CNG will become a segment on their own.

  • RickyBobby

    Nice to see that Volt sales are climbing rapidly even though certain factions are trying their hardest to make it a failure. Attention Fox News, please support Americans, stop your jihad against the Volt. Real American jobs depend on it.

  • Max Reid

    Prius sold 252K units in Japan and 136K in USA and thats a total of 388K units in these 2 countries. Had there not been a quake in Japan, sales should have gone higher.

    2011 is the year, Prius got 2nd model, 2012 will see Prius getting 3rd and 4th models.

    Now GM is also getting a grip with Lacrosse sales of 982 units and in this year, Regal, Verano and Malibu will also join in a big way.

    Also many gas guzzling hybrids with V6 & V8 engines may go away leaving those fuel efficient hybrids with V4 engines to compete better. Hope 2012 will be a much better year for Hybrids.

  • Anonymous

    Well said Rick.

    Fox News, Big Oil, OPEC are all in 1 league opposing earth freindly technologies.

    But this year, many hybrids, plugins, EVs and even other gas saving technologies like Ecoboost & Ecotec will spread fast and bring down the oil consumption.

    Infact in 2011 sales of V4 has overtaken V6 and V8 sales have nearly crashed. This will continue further.

    http://media.gm.com/content/media/us/en/gm/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2011/Mar/0316_fourcyl

  • Anonymous

    NADA puts the Hybrid sales at 280,640
    http://www.nada.org/NR/rdonlyres/30D7295F-5C75-4C8B-B7DA-BC9343391973/0/December2011NADASalesRecap.pdf

    while hybridcars has it as 268,807 and thats an increase of 2.3% compared to YTD 2010.

    Even better is Hybrid cars gaining in sales, while the Hybrid trucks down by 28% and they sold a total of 30,448 units.

    Its high time, automakers concentrate on hybrid cars which are fuel efficient.

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    Home / Shop by Technology /
    Electric Cars: A Definitive Guide
    Electric Cars What Is An Electric Car?

    An electric car is powered by an electric motor instead of a gasoline engine. The electric motor gets energy from a controller, which regulates the amount of power—based on the driver’s use of an accelerator pedal. The electric car (also known as electric vehicle or EV) uses energy stored in its rechargeable batteries, which are recharged by common household electricity.

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    Nissan LeafWith the all-electric Leaf, Nissan is taking the lead in pure electric cars in the United States. The Nissan Leaf is a medium-size all-electric hatchback that seats five adults and has a range of 100 miles. The purchase price is around $25,000, after federal government incentives. It started to roll out in select cities in late 2010.
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    1. New and Upcoming Electric Cars
    2. Limited Run Electric Cars
    3. Low-Speed and Three-Wheel Electric Cars
    4. Discontinued and Rare Electric Cars
    5. Electric Car Conversion

    Unlike a hybrid car—which is fueled by gasoline and uses a battery and motor to improve efficiency—an electric car is powered exclusively by electricity. Historically, EVs have not been widely adopted because of limited driving range before needing to be recharged, long recharging times, and a lack of commitment by automakers to produce and market electric cars that have all the creature comforts of gas-powered cars. That’s changing. As battery technology improves—simultaneously increasing energy storage and reducing cost—major automakers are expected to begin introducing a new generation of electric cars.

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