Registrations for new hybrid vehicles in 2004 leaped by 81% over the previous year, rising to 83,153, according to R.L. Polk & Co., a Southfield, Mich.-based automotive information provider. Fueling that growth were registrations for the Toyota Prius, which recorded 53,761 new registrations.
Not surprisingly, California outpaced all other states in new hybrid registrations in 2004, with 25,021. Second-place Virginia had 5,613 new vehicle registrations, and Washington came in third with 3,441.
Polk says the market for hybrid vehicles has grown by more than 960% since their introduction in 2000.
Hybrid automobiles are powered by internal combustion engines, but are augmented with batteries and an electric motor.