Automakers have posted their February 2011 sales figures and sales of the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf are down. In January 2011, General Motors sold 321 Chevy Volts; this number dropped to 281 in February. Nissan Leaf sales totaled 87 in January and dropped to 67 for the month of February.

While sales of the newest electrified vehicles dropped, Toyota Prius sales rose. Toyota sold 13,539 Priuses in February, up from 10,635 sold in January 2011 and an increase of 69.9 percent from February 2010 sales of 7,968 units.

During February 2011, Toyota Motor Sales sold a total of 16,461 hybrid vehicles – 15,239 from the Toyota division and 1,222 Lexus hybrid models. This represents a 50.2 percent increase in hybrid sales when compared to February 2010.

Honda also posted a year-over-year increase in hybrid sales. Honda Civic Hybrid sales totaled 532 in February 2011, up 53.8 percent from the same period last year. Additionally, Honda sold 1,722 Insights and 1,091 CR-Zs, for a total of 3,345 hybrids sold during the month. This is up from 3,101 sold during January 2011.

As the crisis in the Middle East continues and the instability in Libya remains a concern, gas prices continue to creep up. The rise in gas prices and the similar rise in sales of hybrid and fuel-efficient vehicles is faintly reminiscent of spring and summer 2008. When gas prices topped $4/gallon three years ago, sales of hybrid vehicles jumped significantly and it was easy to find a cheap, good used SUV on car lots across the nation.