At Toyota we believe automakers need to acknowledge our planet’s energy supply, the environment, and the roles that automobiles play. With this in mind, we work hard to create cars that are both efficient and exciting. In December 1997, we launched the Prius, the world's first mass-produced hybrid vehicle and have been expanding the development of such innovations in our line-up. Hybrid systems facilitate the use of alternating power sources, which have become core technologies for the 21st century. In September 2014, 17 years after rolling out the first Prius, we sold our 7 millionth hybrid vehicle. Reaching that milestone would not have been possible without the support of our customers, the people who share our vision. We will continue to strive and develop cars that suit our various lifestyles as well as our various regional characteristics. With such considerate support we will continue to improve performance and lower costs to give people even more exciting options to choose from at Toyota.
Worldwide, more people are choosing hybrid vehicles. A wide range of people love their environment-friendly hybrid cars with a unique and progressive image. Hybrid owners communicate globally and exchange information such as driving techniques for better fuel economy. Efficiency is not the only thing that makes life with a hybrid vehicle more enjoyable.
Thanks to the support of our customers, cumulative global sales of our hybrid vehicles topped the 7 million unit mark in September 2014. The first million cars were sold nine years and nine months after the release of the first Prius. In March 2014 sales climbed to six million. Just six short months after that, 7 million had been sold.
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Launched in 1997, the Prius was the world’s first mass-produced hybrid vehicle.
It was the birth of a visionary new vehicle featuring a completely new kind of drive system that combines a gas/petrol engine and an electric motor. Launched in 2003, the 2nd generation Prius featured a dramatically more enjoyable driving experience. Launched in 2009, 90% of the vehicle’s system was newly redeveloped for the 3rd generation Prius and a reduction gear adopted.
This hybrid system has been introduced in various models other than the Prius and Toyota will continue augmenting its product lineup.