The Toyota Prius ( /ˈpriːəs/; plural: Prii /ˈpriːaɪ/) is a full hybrid electric mid-size hatchback, formerly a compact sedan developed and manufactured by the Toyota Motor Corporation. The EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) rate the Prius as among the cleanest vehicles sold in the United States based on smog-forming emissions.
The Prius first went on sale in Japan in 1997, and was available at all four Toyota Japan dealerships, making it the first mass-produced hybrid vehicle. It was subsequently introduced worldwide in 2000. The Prius is sold in almost 80 countries and regions, with its largest markets being those of Japan and the United States. In May 2008, global cumulative Prius sales reached the milestone 1 million vehicle mark, the 2 million milestone was reached in September 2010, and as of October 2012, a total of 2.8 million Prii have been sold worldwide. Cumulative sales of 1 million Prii were achieved in the U.S. by early April 2011, and Japan reached the 1 million mark in August 2011. Since its launch in 2009, the third-generation Prius sold more than 1 million units worldwide by September 2011.
In 2011, Toyota expanded the Prius family to include the Prius v, an extended hatchback wagon, and the Prius c, a subcompact hatchback. The production version of the Prius plug-in hybrid was released in 2012. The Prius family reached global cumulative sales of 3.3 million units through October 2012, representing 71.5% of Toyota Motor Company hybrid sales of 4.6 million Lexus and Toyota units sold worldwide since 1997.
Read more about Toyota Prius: Etymology and Terminology, First Generation (XW10; 1997–2003), Second Generation (XW20; 2003–2009), Third Generation (XW30; 2009–present), Sales, Design and Technology, Government and Corporate Incentives