Toyota Prius Hybrid Popular Among Very, Very Wealthy Americans

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2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid

2012 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid

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You might think that the wealthiest individuals in society--commonly known as the 'top one percent'--would flaunt that wealth with Ferraris and Porsches.

On the contrary, it seems that they prefer to remain fairly low-key on the roads--and that the humble Toyota Prius is one of the most popular choices.

A survey on Truecar (via our sister site, TheCarConnection), the best-selling car overall in the country's ten wealthiest ZIP codes is nothing more flash than the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. But scan further down the list, and the world's best-selling hybrid is also a common choice, taking fifth spot overall.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Prius is also either first or second most popular in the three Californian ZIP codes--Atherton City, Century City, and Ross.

Ross, which rounds out the overall top ten, has an average income of $497,000 per year--yet a $30,000 hybrid is the most popular vehicle. The Prius also tops the list in Century City--home to MGM, CAA and 20th Century Fox.

So do these figures point to the rich and famous only being seen to be green?

Or is it an example of the wealthiest in society demonstrating their shrewd investments by buying vehicles that do the job without shouting about it?


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Comments (8)
  1. It is a little bit of green washing, but it is better than nothing.

  2. HAHAHAHA. That is b/c Marin County.

    Marinites are known to be NIMBY "rich liberals" who drive Prius for "images"...

    Also, some of that "zip code" are misleading b/c there are also many poor people living in Marin. The extreme rich skew the stats...

  3. Prius also qualified for HOV stickers so many of the Marin residence commute to the City (SF). That help the sales as well. The town of ROSS is tiny...

  4. Could it actually be they just like the car! Ive owned a Bentley, Ferrari,Cadillacs and Lincolns but the Prius is one of the few cars I would repeat purchase.

  5. Did you list those brands in a sequence on purpose? Because they are in the order of declining price and desires...

  6. Lol,:) your too precise, actually the Bentley was the last owned before the Prius but there were many others in between and the Ferrari is worth more today than the Bentley. My varied car ownership has never been to impress but to satisfy my own interest in cars.
    When the time is right a Prius replacement will be a full EV.

  7. I might beat you to it if Nissan can get the next Gen Leaf right... :)

  8. Part of it is the residents of those zipcodes are putting their $$ n choices where their values are...likely many are greener in thinking and more progressive then most other zipcodes.

    But my guess it is a more practical reason then the author n other commenters state. Sure the carpool stickers were and are(Plug-in Prius) a factor but primarily the Prius has been by far the best city/traffic vehicle available. All these zip codes are in congested, street laden areas or drive to such areas(like San Francisco for Ross). The Prius simply turns off the engine most times at a stop or in slow traffic so the Prius is quieter n more efficient than ice vehicles in those conditions. Plus, it's pretty easy to park n has a hatch.

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