By Mark Kleis
Friday, Oct 16th, 2009 @ 4:02 pm
 
Ford Motor Company posted a 73 percent gain in hybrid sales so far in 2009, with 26,016 vehicles sold. Honda outsold Ford with 29,958 vehicles sold, yet only posted an 8 percent gain.




Although Honda leads Ford by nearly 4,000 hybrid sales year to date, Ford outsold Honda in the months of July and September by a total of 2,329 units, putting them on a pace to potentially replace Honda as the number two seller of hybrids for the U.S. market.

The hybrid sales leader in the U.S., Toyota, enjoys a wide margin with year to date sales totaling 144,351 hybrids. Unlike Ford and Honda which both posted gains in hybrid market share, Toyota posted a 28 percent drop in hybrid sales in 2009.

A key to Ford's significant growth into the hybrid market has been the introduction of the new Ford Fusion hybrid, boasting segment leading 41 MPG city, and 34 highway. Ford's David Finnegan says, "More than 60 percent of Fusion Hybrid sales have been from non-Ford owners, and more than half of those are customers coming from import brands, mostly from Toyota and Honda."

The current number two spot holder, Honda, is relying on their Insight and Civic hybrids, which have posted 15,791 unit sales and 14,166 unit sales year to date, respectively. Honda had hoped to sell 90,000 units in their first 12 months in the U.S., but is on pace to fall short.

Honda announced its intention to make improvements to the ride quality and fuel economy for the Insight in hopes of raising sales to projected levels.