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Toyota hybrid sales top 500,000 units

Toyota has announced that it had sold 513,000 hybrid units worldwide to the end of October.

Sales started in Japan in 1997 with the Prius, which started being sold around the rest of the world in 2000. The second generation Prius was launched in 2003, using Toyota’s ‘hybrid synergy drive’ (HSD) system.

This year, Toyota expanded the use of the HSD to the Lexus RX400h and the Highlander Hybrid.

The Japanese company is also preparing a HSD system for rear-wheel drive passenger vehicles and expects to introduce it on the Lexus GS450h, scheduled for launch in spring 2006.

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