In October, Toyota announced that it had sold over two million Prius hybrids globally since it introduced the vehicle in 1997. Remarking on the announcement, Jalopnik (an automotive blog owned by Gawker) compared the Prius sales to U.S. truck sales during the same period. Even though the comparison was between Prius global sales and truck sales only in the United States, as you might expect, the truck sales beat Prius sales by a considerable amount – about 17x.
However, a few things were odd about Jalopnik’s use of data: First, comparing a single vehicle against an entire vehicle category. Second, comparing global sales against U.S. sales. Third, comparing cumulative sales from 1997-2010, since the Prius was only introduced to the United States in 2000, while trucks were an already existing, well established and popular vehicle category with a long head start. While the data isn’t wrong, it tells a misleading and incomplete story. Since Trucks and Hybrids carry a certain cultural symbolism in the United States, I was curious about the full data behind these categories. I felt that there would be some better ways normalize and express the information for a fairer comparison of the categories, and to see if there were any emerging trends that would become visible. I spent some time digging in to the sources that Jalopnik linked to in their post, and found some others to piece together information that was missing (all sources are listed at the bottom of this post).
Vale mucho mucho mucho la pena leer este blog completo. Sobre todo aquellos a los que les interesa cómo el periodismo usa e interpreta los datos con los que da una noticia.