Toyota Motor Sales announced yesterday that its U.S. sales of new cars were up 24.4 percent over the previous April, during the worst of the economic meltdown.
Despite recent months--during which a lawsuits have rained down on Toyota for unintended acceleration and brake related safety concerns relating to the 2010 Prius and other models--the April 2010 sales for the world’s most iconic hybrid are up 50 percent on April 2009.
It’s hardly unexpected: The launch of the third generation 2010 Prius last summer and growing awareness of green cars seem to have won out over the storm of safety recalls and crash fears.
And as some of the high-publicity stories were debunked, public trust in the iconic Toyota Prius hybrid has slowly returned.
Most Prius owners are a very loyal bunch. A generally good service record combined with low running costs keeps many a Prius owner happy--and less likely to switch to a new model when it arrives.
Governmental incentives also helped a great deal. Various Cash-For-Clunkers schemes worldwide have encouraged drivers to ditch older, less environmentally sound cars for those with lower emissions. Naturally the 2010 Toyota Prius was a prime candidate. And more conventional driving characteristics than previous generations helped consumers make the jump.