Sales of Toyota vehicles in the UK have been boosted by a significant increase in the number of drivers switching to hybrids.
Figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders have confirmed that 22.5 per cent of all Toyota UK sales, and almost 25 per cent of total Toyota fleet sales to date in 2014 have been hybrid vehicles.
The Toyota Auris, both the hatchback and the Touring Sports variants, have seen sales increase by over 20 per cent with hybrid models making up more than half of the total sales.
Fleet sales performance has also seen a significant improvement thanks to hybrid sales; figures are up 20 per cent on the same period last year with a total Toyota sales rise of 4.5 per cent.
Toyota could also celebrate impressive figures for the new Aygo, which contributed a rise of almost 20 per cent in the month of September when compared to the same month in 2013.
The RAV4 SUV has also sold in good numbers with an 80 per cent increase on fleet sales and 15 per cent overall jump.
Toyota was particularly active at the 2014 Paris Motor Show last week, with the highlight arguably the unveiling of the Fuel Cell Sedan, which has seen Toyota’s commitment to fuel cell technology taken to the next level.
The Fuel Cell Sedan is the world’s first hydrogen-powered saloon to go into full production and can be refuelled in just three minutes, with the only emissions produced being water vapour.
Toyota’s Fuel Cell Sedan is a development on the FCV Concept which was first unveiled back in 2013 at the Tokyo Motor Show.
Whilst Toyota has kept similar styling to the concept model, several detail changes have been made, including adjustments to the radiator grille, headlights, rear light and aerial, plus the roof and fuel filler cap.
The converter increases the voltage output of the fuel cell, meaning that the size of the motor and number of fuel cells has been able to be reduced, which has simultaneously lowered costs and increased performance.
For twenty years now, Toyota has been developing fuel cell vehicles behind closed doors as part of the manufacturer’s ongoing and significant commitment to environmentally friendly vehicles.
The Toyota Fuel Cell Sedan is tentatively priced at around £43,450 and availability will be at first limited to the regions in which hydrogen refuelling stations are available.
On sale in Japan by April of 2015, Toyota aims to have the Sedan ready for European and US markets by the end of next year, with prices to be announced closer to the time.