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USA: Chevy Volt February Sales Rank It 10th Out of 55 Clean Energy Vehicles

ebruary sales for the Chevrolet Volt placed the extended-range electric car as the tenth best selling alternative-energy vehicle in North America out of a field of at least 55 “green” vehicles offered by all major manufacturers.

The Volt reached this number despite extremely overblown negative media coverage including from a raft of critics willfully misrepresenting facts, and having started with limited production from its launch a little more than a year ago in December 2010.

Since the Volt’s introduction, many have compared it to vehicles in the established internal combustion market, or against another perceived rival, the Nissan Leaf, which was launched around the same time.

But perhaps people ought to evaluate the Volt’s market acceptance against the entire alternative-energy category to which it arguably belongs.

Production-based alternative-energy passenger vehicles include battery electric, some form of hybrid, clean diesel, and natural gas. Of these types, the HybridCars.com monthly “Dashboard” tracks all except natural gas vehicles at this juncture, which represent a yet-limited market.

Slicing the numbers

The top-selling alternative-energy vehicle in the U.S. is the Toyota Prius which has a decade-long head start and has now secured raving fans for its efficient design introduced to an initially micro-sized market. It was a big fish in a small green car pond, and still exceeds all other swimmers by a large margin in the deepening and widening alt-energy gene pool.

Toyota now lumps the regular Prius (Liftback) in with its other family members, so the Prius v (approximately 4,400 units sold) has inflated reported numbers and soon enough the plug-in version and the smaller c variant will further.

Total Prius sales last month of 20,579 (an estimated 16,200 were Liftbacks) dwarfs the third-in-line Camry Hybrid’s 3,750 units sold, and 3,465 sales of the fourth highest-selling alternative-fuel car, the VW Jetta diesel, and fifth highest selling Lexus CT 200h hybrid, of which 2,259 units were delivered.
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