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New Hybrid Cars Rock Green Car Industry

By Donna Bellevue , Mar 25, 2017 04:10 AM EDT
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Sales for hybrid cars are gradually going stronger as the bid to dominate the roads with green cars steadily gain momentum. In Europe, hybrid and plug-in hybrid are selling like pancakes, resulting into an impressive 30 percent to just over 400,000 last year. According to analysts and automakers such as Volkswagen and Renault, green car sales will make even more impact in the midterm as new, and cheap fuel-efficient mild hybrids will continue to rock the sales.

Because they are now cheaper and less complex than full hybrid powertrains, the new hybrid technology is set to capture 18 percent of the European market by 2025. Currently, a big piece of the growth is in full hybrids, largely because of Toyota's increasing success in Europe. The automaker enjoys enormous success in its home market in Japan, making expanding the sale of technology to Europe the most logical next step for the green car business.

Last year, Toyota launched hybrid versions of the RAV4 and CH-R compact SUVs to join gasoline-electric versions of the Auris compact and Yaris subcompact hatchbacks which are already on sale in Europe. The Japanese car maker has sold 232,699 hybrids across Europe, a rise of 47 percent from the year before. Of those, 41,814 were the new RAV4 hybrid, placing Lexus next on the spot as the biggest-selling hybrid brand with sales of 41,372, the CBR reported.

Further expanding the market for eco-friendly cars are Hyundai and Kia. The popular car boards will be adding plug-in hybrid versions of both cars later this year. Plug-in hybrid sales in Europe rose by 19 percent to 112,300 last year, driven by new models that have helped increase the demands, the Auto News reported.

The brand that takes the biggest cake of hybrid sales in Europe by a wide margin is once again the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. It has been reigning supreme since 2014, although demand for the car has dropped 33 percent to 21,149 last year as German automakers started to join in the green car selling business. Plug-in hybrids sale in Europe have already overtaken those of full-electric vehicles and will continue to grow more strongly than EVs in the near term.

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