2009 Saw Good Green Car Sales, But Motivations For Buying Vary

With all of the green car ideas floating around the Geneva Motor Show, one has to wonder: how much will people dig into buying these, especially the electric vehicles? A recent research report from SBI Energy suggests it could be sooner than thought as sales of electric cars last year show great promise for the future.

SBI Energy estimates that globally around 700,000 electric vehicles sold in 2009, led greatly by hybrid electric cars. How much exactly? It was calculated “that sales of hybrids accounted for 99% of all electric vehicle sales.” While this doesn’t necessarily translate into stellar numbers for pure electric car sales, it still shows a growing number of consumers are developing interest in greener forms of personal transportation. Japan led 2009 hybrid electric sales, accounting for almost half, while the United States came in second.

Toyota Auris HSD

image via Toyota

These sales numbers in Japan and the United States don’t necessarily tell the tale at face value of motivations for buying green cars. SBI Energy said, in analyzing the data, it believed that buying “a hybrid in the U.S. is still very much about making a statement concerning oil use and environmental conservationism. In Japan, however, environmental sentiment along with a personal sense of responsibility to do something about environmental issues is much more pervasive.”

I am the editor-in-chief and founder for EarthTechling. This site is my desire to bring the world of green technology to consumers in a timely and informative matter. Prior to this my previous ventures have included a strong freelance writing career and time spent at Silicon Valley start ups.


  • Reply March 10, 2010


    Most people are probably still iffy about green cars because generally green cars are more expensive. You can probably take only half of the money that you were going to use to buy a green car and use it to buy a good-quality used car through professional help from Carsala.

  • Reply March 11, 2010


    “This was a great article about green vehicles on an economic level. I think it’s important for companies to understand the future of green vehicles and the people driving them.

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