Toyota is the undisputed king of hybrid technology, having launched the Prius in the United States automotive market back in 2000, which marked the first hybrid vehicle to enjoy widespread adoption. Fourteen years later, the company is reaching a new milestone of 7 million hybrids sold worldwide, far outpacing any other automaker.
The new goal was reached in September of 2014. For those who don’t remember, it was just nine months ago that Toyota hit the 6 million mark, which is the shortest amount of time that many hybrid models have been sold. Of course, Toyota is engaging in quite a bit of chest thumping at the moment.
Not too long ago others called hybrid powertrain technology a pipe dream, something that wasn’t practical and would burn itself out in short order as the public figured out it had been “duped.” Now, most automakers count at least one hybrid in their lineup, with quite a few working to expand their hybrid offering to meet consumer demand. Toyota is among them, launching 12 new hybrid models and a plug-in vehicle in 2014 alone. It currently boasts 28 different hybrid vehicles offered in different parts of the world, and is working to offer hybrids in markets that don’t currently have any. The car company is also constantly working on making hybrid technology cheaper and even more efficient.
According to Toyota, its hybrids have helped save about 4.75 billion gallons of gasoline and cut 49 million tons of CO2 emissions. No matter your preferences, those numbers are impressive.
While it’s true that Toyota got the ball rolling, there’s no denying that Ferrari, McLaren and Porsche have had a hand in making hybrid vehicles cool by developing and releasing their own hybrid super cars. Others are following suit, such as Acura with the new NSX, showing just how widespread the technology has become in 14 years’ time.