Toyota will need to make adjustments to the production of its Prius family of hybrids.
As mentioned earlier here and in our monthly dashboard, the Toyota Division’s strong April sales performance in the U.S. (160,493 units for 13.1 percent increase compared to April 2011) was helped in large part by the release of its latest hybrid products.
Rising fuel prices at the pump, a generation of better performing hybrid vehicles and an increased consumer acceptance of hybrid technology are all conditions that have helped the sales of Toyota hybrid vehicles.
The Prius family of vehicles, comprised of the Prius, Prius v, Prius Plug-in and Prius c, accounted for a total combined sales volume of 25,168 units in the U.S. Based on current sales, the demand for the Prius Family models seems to be outpacing the company’s initial U.S. target of more than 220,000 units this year.
Notable among the Prius models is the demand for the subcompact Prius c. This newly launched model (EPA-rated 53 city mpg and a starting MSRP of $18,950) continued its rapid sales pace with 4,006 units sold in April. During its first 49 days on the market, Prius c posted sale of 8,901 units.
The redesigned 2012 Camry Hybrid, which was introduced in fall of 2011, also recorded strong sales during March and April 2012. Camry Hybrid sold 9,810 units (5,404 in March and 4,406 units in April) and accounted for 12.4 percent of the total Camry volume during the same two-month period (79,387 total Camry units sold).
The same happened in Canada where Toyota Canada hybrid sales were up 266.4 percent when compared with April 2011, for a total of 1,931 hybrid vehicles sold.
Toyota may have to plan extra Prius production earlier than the expected 2015 U.S. Prius production.