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Toyota passes 15 million hybrid vehicles global sales

  • Pioneer and leader in self-charging hybrid technology, Toyota has crossed the symbolic milestone of 15 million hybrid vehicles sold globally since the 1997 launch of the iconic Prius, the first full hybrid mass-produced car
  • Toyota's hybrid technology has reduced CO2 emissions by more than 120 million tonnes worldwide
  • In Europe, the company has sold over 2.8M hybrid cars, allowing it to be a leading automaker towards EU CO2 reduction targets in 2020 and 2021
  • Excellent at reducing CO2 emissions, Toyota’s hybrid technology also allows drivers to cover more than 50% of their journeys in and around the city in zero emission mode, offering an affordable way to improve air quality
  • Self-charging Hybrid accounts for 12.4% of the mix in Ireland
  • In 2019, the hybrids sold in Ireland will save over 60,000 tonnes of CO2 through their lifetime

In January 2020, Toyota passed the milestone of more than 15 million self-charging hybrid vehicles (HEV) sales worldwide since the Prius was first launched in 1997. Closer to home, in Ireland hybrid is growing from strength to strength with 12.4% of the overall new car sales market, compared to 8.1% this time last year, and hybrid represents over 86% of Toyota’s overall new car sales year to date.

Steve Tormey, CEO, Toyota Ireland said, “We are extremely proud about hitting this monumental milestone, particularly as it represents a massive reduction in CO2 from our environment and cleaner air for all. In Ireland, the new Toyota hybrids sold in 2019 alone will result in the reduction of 60,000 tonnes of CO2 from our environment over the course of their lifetime.

Toyota is fully committed to playing its part and leading Ireland towards zero emissions motoring as we have been doing for the past 23 years with self-charging Hybrid vehicles, and in addition to electric vehicle growth, we believe policy makers should be encouraging the growth of Hybrids, as we firmly believe a Hybrid mix of 25% can be achieved in 2021, which would reduce Ireland’s CO2 by 166,000 tonnes in their lifetime.”

The range of available hybrid vehicles at the global level from Toyota and Lexus now reaches 44, far eclipsing the original flag-bearer that remains the symbol of the company’s early and visionary foray into mass electrification. In Ireland, Toyota has the largest range of self-charging hybrids with nine hybrid vehicles available for customers, and with more coming - the RAV4 plug-in hybrid will arrive later this year, and the recently announced Yaris Cross will arrive in the second half of 2021.

Toyota’s decision to develop hybrid vehicles started over 25 years ago when Takeshi Uchiyamada led a team to develop a car for the 21st century, one which would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful pollutants. The first-generation Prius was launched in 1997 around the time of the Kyoto Protocol signing, which gave new momentum to the environmental movement. Today, 15 million hybrid sales later, Toyota has made a significant contribution to the environment as its hybrid technology has reduced CO2 emissions by more than 120 million tonnes worldwide to date compared to sales of equivalent petrol vehicles.

The company’s original vision has allowed Toyota to be the leader in meeting increasingly stringent emissions regulations around the world, “It is thanks to our hybrid sales that Toyota is well on its way to meeting the 95g/km target set by the EU for 2020 and 2021 in Europe, where CO2 regulations are the toughest in the world,” says Matt Harrison, Executive Vice President of Toyota Motor Europe (TME). “In addition, our full hybrids are also incredibly effective at running without emissions for the majority of the time in cities,” he added.

Across this period, Toyota has seen demand for its hybrid vehicles soar as the company has combined this innovative technology with emotional design enabled by the roll-out of its TNGA global platforms. Beyond the current 4th generation hybrid system, Toyota is continuing to refine its hybrid technology to achieve even lower emissions and ever-better fuel efficiency. Today, hybrid vehicles are affordable, accessible and convenient for customers across a broad spread of European markets.

Hybrid naturally leads to BEV and FCEV

While Toyota believes that HEVs are an essential part of the future overall mix of electrified vehicles, two decades of electrification experience also feed into the company’s mutli-powertrain strategy. The company provides and will continue to provide various types of electrified vehicles to reduce emissions based on regulations, market infrastructure and ultimately customer demand. Toyota does not see a one ‘winner takes all’ scenario but a future where the different electrified technologies, including hybrids and plug-ins (PHEV), fuel cell (FCEV) and battery electric (BEV) vehicles, all play a part.

As a result of its long hybrid vehicle experience, the company has deep transferable expertise in the core electrification technologies which are common across all form of electrified powertrains, putting them in pole position for an electrified future. Over two decades of continuous development of electric motors, batteries and power control units has taught Toyota how to manage and reuse energy efficiently, providing a range of electrified options for Toyota customers through HEVs, PHEVs, BEVs and FCEVs. These will be launching across Europe over the next few years.

Its hybrid vehicles will remain a core part of the powertrain mix meeting customers’ needs and helping drive down emissions together with other types of electrified vehicles. That has been the company’s goal ever since it launched the first Prius over 20 years ago, with the ultimate ambition to achieve zero emissions in a widespread and sustainable way.