Prius Sales Outmuscle Muscle Cars in August

Prius It would probably be best if while reading this blog post you listen to something clichéd like Bob Dylan’s “The Times They are A-Changin’.”

While muscle-car enthusiasts will comb over the meaning behind the Chevy Camaro beating the Ford Mustang in sales for the third straight month, we couldn’t help but notice that the Toyota Prius beat the August sales for the three staple muscle cars — including the Dodge Challenger — combined.

With an assist from Cash for Clunkers, the 50-mpg Prius moved 18,886 units in August compared to 8,680 Camaros, 6,289 Mustangs and 1,132 Challengers (a total of 16,101 units).

The Prius also outsold the reliably robust Dodge Ram (17,514 units in August).

Overall, the market share of hybrids reached 4.5% in August, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. That’s up from 3% of all vehicle sales for June 2009 before Clunkers began.




Does this mean the mind set of the general US population that bigger is better might be changing? Awesome news.


Toyota could have always sold that number had they been available.Plus the fact that the current model is all new,and the Feds handing out $4500 for models bought above a certain MPG figure played right into Toyotas hands.Picking marginal players like Camaro,Mustang and Challenger (and even RAM) with Prius sales is a no brainer.Try comparing it against Cobalt,Corolla,Civic,Aveo,Versa,Accent...etc sales instead.

Original sheth

"we couldn’t help but notice that the Toyota Prius beat the August sales for the three staple muscle cars — including the Dodge Challenger —"

How is this news? The Prius has been outselling these cars. It has only one direct competitor and is very unique. Besides, why limit the comparison to "muscle cars"? why not compare it to sports sedans or pickups or luxury sedans?

Original sheth

BTW, the 25mpg CR-V sold 30k units last month. Toyota's own camry outsold the prius almost 3 to one. I don't think 4.5% of vehicle sales counts as a movement. especially when that number was pumped up by CARS.

1. The Prius starts at $22K about the same price as the muscle cars, not economy cars.
2. Two years ago, Toyota had trouble selling the Prius. Last year they couldn't meet demand. This year both seem to be aligned.

I think the numbers definitely speak to the change in the market despite really low gas prices compared to last year. Now compared to other midsize sedans might be a good comparison for sure where it didn't outsell the Accord, Camry, Altima or Fusion, but did outsell Malibu.

Original sheth

Again, what is the point? When have muscle cars ever been top sellers in the market? OK, maybe in 1969 or something. The camaro was cancelled in 2002 due to soft sales and a dated platform. The Mustang does reasonably well but has not been a top 10 peformer. Most pickups start in the low 20s and the Silverado and F150 are still selling far more than Prius. Muscle cars appeal to a pretty narrow set of customers. The fact that impractical coupes with V8 power cannot match Prius sales should not be surprising. By next month hybrid sales will likely be back to 3% unless gas prices spike.


How is this an interesting tidbit? Are you kidding Overblown Shet? Just because you spend all of your time reading articles about GM doesn't mean other people don't find this interesting. For many years people have been saying the Prius is a niche vehicle. For it to beat out 3 niche vehicles from 3 different companies is saying something.

Honestly Dave, what will it take for you to ban him? I know it isn't going to mean much because he will still be here an Mrs. Blumpkin or something, but really he adds absolutely nothing and actually detracts from your blog.


Muscle cars aren't exactly practical family cars, and they're often an optional car. Then again, in the case of the Camaro, you couldn't walk into a dealer and buy one. Here in West LA, the only Chevy dealer didn't have any in stock and didn't have one on display, because they've sold every one they could get their hands on.

In any case, it's one of those things where stats are used to relate facts that aren't exactly connected. The whole point of cash for clunkers was to get people into high mileage cars. The Camaro 6 cylinder qualified, but it isn't exactly what someone wanting that CFC rebate would be going in to look for.

Dave Wuss

The real story is the Prius outselling the Ram. I didn't think a hybrid could outsell a 'work truck' in this environment. You'd think gas would have to be much higher for that to happen. Maybe folks are starting to wise up and look at a new car purchase in longer terms (ie 5-7 years not 2-4).

Too bad for GM that the rental car companies are not buying. Whatever happened to that Bob Lutz special, the Chevy Malibu Hybrid. Didn't the 24 mpg in the city win folks over??

Original sheth


C4C was geared towards efficient cars. Did you miss that? The government's list is designed to reflect a supposed focus on fuel efficient cars. The government wasn't interested in boosting sales of the Ram and some Ram models probably didn't qualify. The Prius was undoubtedly a huge beneficiary of the program. Lets compared September sales to get a better idea of how the Prius compares to pickup sales. I think you are going to see huge drop in hybrid and compact sales in the next few months.

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