Cumulative Prius European sales accelerate to 200,000 to celebrate first decade on European market

  • With cumulative European sales of Prius topping the 100,000 mark in May 2008, the figure has doubled to 200,000 in just two years
  • Over three generations, Prius achieves 26% CO2 emissions reduction, 23% fall in fuel consumption and 30% increase in power
  • Hybrid Synergy Drive® generates record-low CO2 emissions, almost no particulates (PM) and significantly lower NOX emissions than any conventional diesel powertrain
  • Full hybrid technology features electric driving mode with zero CO2, NOX and PM emissions
  • Proven reliability and outstanding value for money with low running, maintenance and insurance costs

Finding increasing acceptance as a mainstream model, the full hybrid Prius celebrates the major milestone of its first decade on the European market with a dramatic acceleration in sales performance.

With cumulative European sales of Prius topping the 100,000 mark in May 2008, the figure has now doubled to 200,000 in just two years. Global sales of Prius are expected to exceed 2 million units by the autumn of 2010.

Launched in Japan in 1997, the first generation Prius became the first mass-produced hybrid vehicle available on the European market in 2000. Over the last decade, the number of European countries in which it is sold has increased from 13 to 38.

Voted Car of the Year by European, Japanese and American motoring journalists, the Prius has won numerous highly prestigious awards. Its globally recognised Hybrid Synergy Drive® is one of the most successful powertrains in the history of the International Engine of the Year awards, with a total of 11 titles to date.

Prius has been consistently ahead of its time in addressing environmental issues, leading the field in the pursuit of improved fuel efficiency and a reduction in CO2, NOX and particulate emissions. The last decade has witnessed a fall in the fuel consumption of its Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain of more than 23% and a reduction in CO2 emissions of almost 26% from 120 g/km to just 89 g/km. Yet system power has simultaneously increased by 30%.

Three generations of Prius have not only seen significant improvements to successive evolutions of its Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain, but also a marked change in customer perceptions of full hybrid technology.

First generation Prius owners were won over by the car's unique concept and technological innovation. Second generation owners are enthusiastic early adopters of niche technologies, remaining passionate about the Prius product concept regardless of the opinions of others. Third generation customers, however, recognise the Prius as a true mainstream vehicle with on-road performance and dynamic abilities which now bear comparison with any D segment competitor.

Representing the ultimate synergy of high technology and environmentally-conscientious forward thinking in powertrain design, Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive® equips the Prius with full hybrid capability, operating in petrol and electric modes alone, as well as a combination of both.

Through the incorporation of an electric-only drive mode unique to full hybrid technology, the Prius addresses not only CO2 emissions, but also air quality. Even operating in normal drive mode, the Prius generates significantly lower NOX emissions than any comparable diesel engined vehicle. With vehicle range dictated by battery charge, the EV drive mode allows for urban driving at speeds of up to 45 km/h, for up to two kilometres, with minimal noise and zero CO2, NOX and particulate (PM) emissions.

In addition to its highly advanced, full hybrid powertrain, the third generation Prius also introduces numerous high technology features to the segment. They include a world-first combination of a solar powered ventilation system and remote controlled air conditioning, a head-up display, touch sensitive Touch Tracer steering wheel-mounted switches and a pre-crash safety system.

Despite this remarkably high content of advanced technology, the Prius maintains a peerless reputation for reliability and is exceptional value for money. Its well proven Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain has been designed for low maintenance and outstanding durability, awarding the Prius the lowest warranty cost per unit amongst all Toyota models.

Best-in-market CO2 emissions and combined cycle fuel economy of 3.9 l/100 km offer Prius customers significant, pan-European tax incentives, inner city congestion charge exemption and exceptionally low running costs.

The recent launch of the Auris HSD marks the start of a dramatic expansion in Toyota's full hybrid model range. The company aims to offer all of its European models with a Hybrid Synergy Drive® powertrain derivative as early as possible in the 2020s.