April 2019 plug-in EV sale numbers are in

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by Marine Ray, May 1, 2019.

  1. Marine Ray

    Marine Ray Senior Member

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  2. Prius from Dad

    Prius from Dad Senior Member

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  3. bruceha_2000

    bruceha_2000 Senior Member

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    Yes it does. The Bolt drop is pretty big. As are the Model S, X and the Volt.
     
  4. Marine Ray

    Marine Ray Senior Member

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    The Tesla S and X look like they went up from Jan Feb...

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  5. John321

    John321 Active Member

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    These numbers on the surface may look impressive. Here is some perspective in the Georgetown Ky plant they make about 500 Camry's a shift, they have two plants so -1000 a shift. They run two shifts so they make 2000 a day or 10,000 a week if they can sell the units. At one time our yearly production goal was 550,000 units a year. We had to work a number of weekends to produce this many.

    It begs the question how can Toyota possibly make a profit on such a low production vehicle. If the sales numbers are correct the Georgetown plant could produce the yearly quota of these vehicles in about one week.
    I personally really like the EV and Prime Plug In but the limited availability and location specific distribution removes these vehicles from most consumers consideration. I am beginning to wonder if these vehicles aren't a publicity stunt or an attempt to carefully impact overall fleet mpg rather than a true vehicle marketing attempt.
     
    #5 John321, May 1, 2019
    Last edited: May 1, 2019
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  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    all are except tesla
     
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  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    am i reading right that toyota sold over 9,000 primes thru april of 2018?
     
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  8. jb in NE

    jb in NE Senior Member

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    It may be the other way around. There is little market demand for these vehicles, so they sell them where the market exists.

    At the limited sales rate, these vehicles have almost no impact on fleet mpg. I'll applaud Toyota for making this vehicle even if it isn't a big profit center.
     
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  9. noonm

    noonm Senior Member

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    I suspect they are part compliance vehicle and part hedging with EV technology. If gas prices spiked, like they did back in 2008, these companies will be much better positioned to grab market share. Its much easier to ramp up production of an existing PEV/BEV than having to design/build one from scratch.
     
  10. kevin.c

    kevin.c Member

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    What noonm said about compliance. California requires a certain % of cars to be electric. Manufacturers that don’t hit the goal need to buy credits from other manufacturers. Which might be more expensive, especially since the Prius Prime shares many parts with the normal Prius.

    The Mirai, on the other hand, doesn’t even have a formal production line. The factory looks more like a low volume EVT build.

     
  11. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    That narrative is making the rounds. It's easy to get sucked into the belief of that being the case too... if you aren't familiar with Toyota's history.

    The practice of intentionally limiting rollout is what we saw with Prius even before it rolled out here in the United States. That extremely limited offering, only available in Japan, actually had a plug. It was quickly dropped, since battery-tech of the time offered very little capacity to take advantage of. In fact, the rollout in the United States was came with an entirely new pack... so significant of an upgrade, it should have been called a full generation. Switching from D-cell packaging to prismatic was a really big deal. But back then, no one cared. It was just labeled as a mid-cycle update, despite the pack change, the screen changing from button to touch, the engine gaining more power, and the look itself changing.

    That's not even the point of the story either. It was that Toyota continued to hold back. Cruise-Control was intentionally not included, a way of deterring those who weren't absolutely interested in purchasing a Prius. After all, there was no tax-credit back then. You could only get a tax-deduction, which equated to about $350 for most people. It was a blatant effort to attract only the devoted. We proved it too, by confirming cruise-control was part of the system already, only the stalk with interface buttons was left off... which you could have the dealer add later, if you were so inclined.

    Toyota wasn't targeting mainstream consumers yet. They used early rollout as an opportunity to collect real-world data. This is why they felt free to experiment with Prius Prime. Knowing that it would only be offered in specific areas, feedback from those markets could be studied without having to re-educate later, should big changes be offered in a mid-cycle update. After all, Toyota knew GM was using Volt as a publicity stunt by attracting conquest sales with tax-credits, not even trying to draw interest from their own loyal customers. That meant Toyota has lots of time available. So, we saw this first half of Prime's product-cycle with a middle-seat swapped out for an arm-rest with storage and the cargo-area raised to offer more capacity.

    That choice resulted in valuable real-world data. All that telematic activity provided a vital understanding of how the system would operate in true driving conditions, but without interfering with upgrade & diversification efforts underway at their dealers. Remember, it's about changing the entire fleet, the whole product-line, not just offering a token vehicle. That has gone well, as we see the upgrades to Camry & RAV4 hybrids and the introduction of Corolla hybrid taking place. At the same time, there's some tweaks to Prius Prime on the way.

    In other words, taking the time to consider the bigger picture along a larger timeline, you can see what Toyota is really doing.
     
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  12. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    I know where one of them is at(y).
     
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  13. John321

    John321 Active Member

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    I've read the discussions and appreciate the many points people bought up. You can easily tell that many have thought about this and have well developed thoughts on the matter.
    I am familiar with Toyota philosophy and direction. I have actually briefly trained in their Japanese plant- Tsutsumi -for my job in America. I have owned Toyota vehicles exclusively since 1975. I love the brand and its reliability.
    I want to buy a Toyota plug in but they just aren't available.
    We have made some adjustments to our expectations and called a Kia Dealer about the Niro Plug In Hybrid. They said they currently had three on the lot and would be more than happy to order one to be delivered to the dealership it we wanted one. This is a real world example of how Toyota Sales is failing loyal customers who want their products. I my humble opinion Kia and other dealerships who put the customer first will take and keep the customers and Toyota is unfortunately going to be passed up in this market. It disappoints me to say that as I am a loyal Toyota brand customer.
     
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  14. jb in NE

    jb in NE Senior Member

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    Are they not available only locally? In Lexington, for example, there is a red Prime Advanced listed on the dealer website. Another Prime Advanced in Bowling Green.

    You can get Primes quickly in NJ/NY/MA, California, etc. I flew to California for $125 and drove my Prime home to Nebraska. Saved some $$, got the car I wanted, visited family and got a road trip in the deal.

    I would estimate that you could have a Prime shipped to you from NJ for $1,000 or so. So, with the reported good deals there, you could buy it and wait for the truck to show up.
     
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  15. John321

    John321 Active Member

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    On Monday of this week I had walked the lot in the Lexington area - Greens Toyota- they had no inventory. The Dealership also had told me previously the Dealer was not interested in ordering these vehicles not exchanging a vehicle with another dealership. This may be because I am a former Toyota employee and get a discount on Toyota vehicles. Irregardless I am an educated well informed consumer very familiar with Toyota.
    My experiences are not made up or exaggerated. If I could I would buy a Prime Plug In locally . At one time I actually had contacted a dealer in Southeastern New York about buying a 2018 Plug in but it sold before we could close the deal. Afterwards when I had time to reflect I realized at least for me that was a ridiculous adventure to go through to buy a car. One I will never consider again.
     
  16. jb in NE

    jb in NE Senior Member

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    I don't think this is a Toyota sales problem as much as a local Toyota dealer problem. The dealers buy the cars from Toyota and sell them to the customer. If the dealer isn't sure they can sell the car, they won't buy them from Toyota.

    In the Omaha Nebraska area today, there is one Prime available, an Advanced model. That was the case when I was shopping locally at the end of last year. Just down the road 180 miles, in the Kansas City area, there are 6 Advanced.

    If there is insufficient demand in your area for dealers to stock them (as is the case in my area), the only option is to go elsewhere to get one.

    There are 39 Primes listed in Cincinnati, in all trim levels.
     
  17. John321

    John321 Active Member

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    what app do you use to search for Inventory , are you doing this from Toyota site or a 3rd party app?

    Note received from Toyota sales a week ago we contacted the local they Dealer as they suggested:

    Thank you for contacting Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

    We appreciate your having owned so many Toyotas, and your interest in the Prius Prime.
    Prius Prime brochure
    Toyota dealers work with our regional offices to determine what vehicle, transmission, color and option combinations they feel will sell best in their geographical market, and request vehicle allocations accordingly. Because of this, some model configurations and options may not be available in your area, while other options may be available, but only as part of a combination of packages and may not be displayed on the Build & Price web site.

    To determine if the specific vehicle you seek may be requested, please inquire with your local Toyota dealer. Your dealer will advise you whether a preference request can be submitted for your desired vehicle. This preference request does not guarantee you will receive the vehicle with the exact options requested, and may create an extended wait-time.

    If you would like us to contact a specific Toyota dealer on your behalf, please reply to this email with the specific type of vehicle, including all options and colors that you are seeking along with your phone number and the name of the dealer you would like to work with.

    Your email has been documented at our National Headquarters. If we can be of further assistance, please feel free to contact us.

    Sincerely,

    James F.
    Toyota Customer Experience Center
     
  18. jb in NE

    jb in NE Senior Member

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    Toyota site - look up the model you want and then check local availability (it is at the very bottom of the page - ["model you want" near you]. Use the zip code for the location where you want to search.

    In my experience, buying from the dealer with the car on the lot is generally the best opportunity for a good deal. They have the money sunk in the car, it's taking up space, it would count toward sales totals, etc. If your local dealer were to fetch the car, they have much less incentive to discount the car. They know they have a buyer, and they don't have any money or lot space tied up in the vehicle.

    That Toyota reply is standard corporate-speak. They sell cars to dealers, and don't want to upset any dealers, so they always try to steer you to your nearest dealer.
     
    #18 jb in NE, May 2, 2019
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
  19. smyles

    smyles Active Member

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    Dealers can buy cars from Toyota as well as from each other; at the end of 2018 a lot of Primes were moved all along East coast due to splash in demand caused by incentives and folks discovering they owe taxes.

    So if your dealer doesn't have one on his lot, he absolutely can get one for you. It's just he'd rather sell something else off his floor, or just doesn't see enough profit nor willing to end up with an unsellable car in his inventory.
     
  20. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    Having mainstream expectations during this early-adopter stage will inevitably lead to disappointment. You need to be realistic about timeline. Paradigm shifts do not happen overnight. The industry is still just introducing first choices, experimenting with configurations while very much depending upon subsidies to get established. We are many years away from the ordinary customer shopping experience.

    With the case of Prius Prime specifically, we know there's a mid-cycle update on the way for 2020. That means there's no benefit to ramping up inventory of the outgoing model... especially when you take the Osborne Effect into account. Making matters worse, the industry itself is faced with having to deal with fallout from Innovator's Dilemma... specifically the problem GM created by making Volt too specialized, causing market confusion in the process.

    Think about what it takes to build vehicles requiring large quantities of product not scaled-up yet for high-volume. (Toyota sells over 10 Million new vehicles annually.) Think about what it takes to ensure salespeople & mechanics are well informed about the new product you are rolling out. That's a monumental challenge to do it right. Also making it both competitive and profitable requires a lot of time.

    That everyday shopping experience you hope for will happen, eventually. Look at what happened with hybrids. You can now go to a Toyota dealer and choose between several different choices. Deciding between a hatchback (Prius), 3 different sizes of sedan (Corolla, Camry, Avalon), and 2 different sizes of SUV (RAV4 & Highlander) is now totally realistic. We will likely be getting the C-HR hybrid here in the not-too-distant future as well. All that took awhile though. The same will be the case for plug-in hybrids.

    What other legacy automakers will be offering anything in quantity anytime soon?
     
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