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Toyota Prius May Sales Down Almost 50% Due to Japan Earthquake

Discussion in 'Prius, Hybrid, EV and Alt-Fuel News' started by Danny, Jun 1, 2011.

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  1. Danny

    Danny Admin/Founder Staff Member

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    With gas at almost $4.00 a gallon across the US, May should have been a month of record-breaking Prius sales. Not so, thanks to Mother Nature. Toyota Prius sales were down 47.4% compared to May 2010 due entirely to a constricted supply line following the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The Prius sold a meager 6,924 units compared to 14,248 last May.
    I haven't looked at the all of the numbers, but less than 7,000 units is lower than I have seen for US Prius sales in a very very long time. Thankfully, things only look up from here. Toyota recently told me that they will have 36,000 Prius available for sale in the US by the end of the summer, and Japanese production should hit 90% of normal levels this month.
    "As expected, May was an especially challenging month due mainly to uncertainties about our production forecast. But thanks to the tremendous efforts of our manufacturing team members and suppliers, we are ramping up much faster than expected," said Bob Carter, Toyota Division group vice president and general manager, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. "Beginning this month, Japan production will be at 90 percent of normal levels, and eight of twelve North American-built vehicles will be at 100 percent. With more vehicles arriving at our dealerships and enhanced dealer support programs gaining traction with customers, we're optimistic that our sales outlook will continue to improve."
    Toyota was down 33% overall compared to 2010.
    Full press release and sales chart below.

    Toyota Reports May Sales
    TORRANCE, Calif. (June 1, 2011) – Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc., today reported May 2011 sales results of 108,387 units, a decrease of 27.9 percent compared to the same period last year, on a daily selling rate (DSR) basis. On a raw volume basis, unadjusted for 24 selling days in May 2011 compared to 26 selling days in May 2010, TMS sales were down 33.4 percent over the year-ago month.

    The Toyota Division posted May total sales of 96,082 units, a decrease of 26.0 percent on a DSR basis from May 2010. On a raw volume basis, Toyota Division sales were down 31.6 percent from the year-ago month. The Lexus Division reported total sales of 12,305 units, down 40.0 percent from May 2010, on a DSR basis. Volume-wise, Lexus Division sales were down 44.6 percent compared to the same period last year.

    Toyota Division Toyota Division passenger cars recorded combined sales of 51,238 units, down 32.2 percent from May 2010. Passenger car sales were led by Camry and Camry Hybrid with combined sales of 18,830 units for the month. Corolla reported combined May sales of 16,985 units, and the Prius mid-size gas-electric hybrid posted May sales of 6,924 units.

    Toyota Division light trucks recorded May sales of 44,844 units, a decrease of 17.3 percent compared to last year. Light truck sales were led by the RAV4 compact SUV with monthly sales of 8,624, while Highlander and Highlander Hybrid reported combined sales of 5,755 units. The Tacoma mid-size pickup posted sales of 9,091 units, an increase of 14.1 percent compared to last May. The Tundra full-size pickup reported sales of 4,307 units, and the Sienna minivan recorded sales of 8,618 units.

    "As expected, May was an especially challenging month due mainly to uncertainties about our production forecast. But thanks to the tremendous efforts of our manufacturing team members and suppliers, we are ramping up much faster than expected," said Bob Carter, Toyota Division group vice president and general manager, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. "Beginning this month, Japan production will be at 90 percent of normal levels, and eight of twelve North American-built vehicles will be at 100 percent. With more vehicles arriving at our dealerships and enhanced dealer support programs gaining traction with customers, we're optimistic that our sales outlook will continue to improve."

    Scion posted May sales of 4,696 units, an increase of 23.7 percent over May 2010. The tC sports coupe led the way with sales of 2,664 units, up 119 percent year-over-year. The xD reported sales of 854 units for the month, up 1.1 percent compared to the same period last year, while the xB urban utility vehicle posted May sales of 1,178 units.

    Lexus DivisionLexus reported passenger car sales of 5,681 units, down 46.3 percent from May 2010. The ES 350 entry luxury sedan led Lexus passenger car sales with sales of 2,400 units, while the IS lineup reported combined sales of 1,715 units. The all-new CT 200h hybrid posted 454 units in its third month of sales.

    Lexus light trucks recorded sales of 6,624 units, down 33.2 percent over May 2010. Lexus light truck sales were led by the RX luxury utility vehicle, which posted combined May sales of 5,847 units. The GX 460 mid-size luxury utility vehicle reported sales of 635 units.

    TMS HybridsTMS posted May sales of 8,968 hybrid vehicles, a decrease of 49.2 percent compared to the same period last year. Toyota Division posted May sales of 7,665 hybrids, while Lexus Division reported sales 1,303 hybrids for the month.

    Toyota May 2011 Sales Chart
    Source: Toyota Pressroom
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  2. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    LOL @ Lexus LFA sales. :rolleyes:
  3. Skoorbmax

    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    I do feel bad for Toyota. While others like me were badmouthing hybrids they kept at it and now for our second big oil spike in a decade they would have been poised to swamp the roads with Priuses but got nailed by the Tsunami. We'd probably be a two Prius household, in fact I'm almost positive we would be, if not for the supply issues right now. I started looking seriously just as the last local used Priuses were drying up and the only ones left are $600,000 for a 2006 with 125k miles and nary a new one to be seen, certainly not at a price worth buying.
  4. drash

    drash Active Member

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    Yep there are more Camry Hybrids within a 100 miles than Prii. There's a total of 9.
    :eek:
  5. CPSDarren

    CPSDarren CPS Technician

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    There are basically 0 Highlander Hybrids within 250 miles of Chicago, at least according to inventory searches at Edmunds.com, Cars.com and Buyatoyota.com. Between gas prices here (among higest in country), supply issues and the top Consumer Reports rating, it seems the relatively low normal supply has been cleared out.
  6. warfasts

    warfasts Junior Member

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    Plenty of Prius on the lots here in west FL. Full sticker of course.
  7. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney EditProfOptInfoCustomUser Title

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    I'm sure that's a contributing factor in the sales drop. Some of the prices being asked are a joke. $29k for a Two? I just hope any buyers who've looked steer clear of the rip-off merchants when they return later in the fall.
  8. Comrad_Durandal

    Comrad_Durandal New Member

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    Gee, could be the fact that the second the earthquake happened, the prices shot right up to MSRP - then started steadily rising from there. I've seen a local dealer moving new Prius to nearby rented lots so their lot can look devoid of them. It's one thing when you have an honest-to-betsy shortage of stock; it's quite another when you fabricate one by inventory tomfoolery.
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