The first domestic hybrid car was not introduced to the US market until 2004, when it sold only less than 3,000 units. Sales in 2005 was more than 500% of 2004 figures. And the trend continued upward, even until last year, when total domestic sale was more than 200,000 units.
This was affirmed by the Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC), which pointed out that since 2005, the federal government and many states provided rebates and/or tax incentives to consumers who bought hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs). "The Toyota Prius has been the top-selling HEV model since its introduction in 2000 despite the fact that there are now nearly 60 models available. Decline in sales, between 2008 and 2011 is consistent with overall declines in vehicle sales during the Great Recession. The increase in 2012 can be attributed to economic recovery, increased gasoline prices, and new CAFE standards."
If you're planning to join the bandwagon and buying a hybrid car, you might want to compare transportation cost and savings first. According to a comparison between gas, diesel and hybrid cars, the choice would depend on the kind of driving you do and how much distance you actually travel. "Go with gasoline if you’re a low-mileage driver, hybrid for city driving, and diesel for high-mileage (mostly highway) driving. The mainstream gasoline engine is best if you drive less than 7500 miles a year because the savings on fuel won’t match the premium you’re likely to pay for a hybrid or diesel car. Hybrid is the winner if you cover a lot of miles in stop and go city driving or on clogged expressways, where braking recharges the battery that powers the electric motor. It helps if you’re easy on the throttle and brake early and smoothly in a hybrid."
"The main difference between gas and hybrid cars is the way the engine functions. The bottom line is that hybrid cars are more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly than gas cars, but they are also more expensive." If you want to go completely green, then opt for an electric battery-powered vehicle.