According to a new study from Experian Automotive, hybrid vehicle market shares in the US increased by 40.9% in 2012. The overall market share increased from 2.2% to 3.1% in a single year.
While hybrid vehicles still only make up slightly more than 1% of the total vehicles in operation, the hybrid vehicle segment has witnessed steady growth of market share over the past several quarters. This is a good indication of the hybrid car’s relentless transformation from eco-themed curiosity to the mainstream’s car of choice.
In the study, Experian also reviewed some of the financial attributes of hybrid vehicle loans. The study found that consumers purchasing a hybrid have significantly higher credit scores than those purchasing other types of new vehicles.
On average, the consumers who purchased a new hybrid had an average credit score of 790 compared with the national average credit score of 755 for a loan on any new vehicle.
The gender split is fairly even, if slightly in favor of women. 53% of adults who live in a hybrid household are female, and the average age of the drivers is 25-34 years old.
The average amount financed on a hybrid vehicle was $25,807, and the average monthly payment was $461. Additionally, the average interest rate for a new hybrid vehicle loan was 3.51%.
In 2012, 3.1% of all vehicles financed where hybrids, up from 2.3% in 2009 and 1.5% in 2006. The lease/loan ratio in 2012 for hybrid vehicles was 21.4% lease and 78.6% loan.
Toyota’s Prius tops the list of hybrid vehicles bought on finance in 2012, and it took 37.2% of the hybrid market, with the Camry Hybrid at 8.9% and the Prius V at 8.6%.
The Chevy Volt had a modest 6.3%, followed by the Hyundai Sonata at 4.8%. The Lexus CT 200h landed at 4.2%, and the Kia Optima and Nissan Leaf tied at 2.7%.