The sample size isn’t big enough to cause worry across the board, but if the sales figures for hybrid cars this August are an indication of things to come, then the long thought of the hybrid invasion could be held off for the time being.

As a result of stable fuel prices recently – that’s a good thing, though - overall sales for hybrid vehicles nosedived by 40% in August compared to the same time frame a year ago with the segment’s undisputed heavyweight, the Toyota Prius, seeing its sales figures plummet 37.5% compared to its August 2009 figures. Even its month-by-month numbers took a dip by 16.3% from sales figures in July 2010.

While it’s easy to point out the steep drop in sales of hybrid cars in the past month as a sign of the times, it’s also worth pointing out that last year’s numbers shot off the charts mostly because of the US government implementing the Cash for Clunkers program, resulting in an unprecedented number of hybrids being scooped up by customers.

Ultimately, the slowing down of hybrid sales this summer is being attributed to the low prices at the pumps. Whether hybrids rebound or continue their downward turn is a matter based on how fuel prices perform in the next coming months, but there’s no doubt in anybody’s mind that all of us would strongly prefer stable – and cheap – fuel prices, even at the cost of declining sales for hybrid cars.

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Source: Edmunds

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