Rich People Love The Toyota Prius, Mercedes-Benz E-Class

By Blake Z. Rong | August 08, 2012
For a car that costs a mere $24,000, the rich sure love to flock to the Toyota Prius. Surprised? Not in Southern California, where Century City—home of the Nakatomi Plaza and a average income of $751,000—has the most Toyota Prii registered, in front of various Mercedes products and the BMW 3 Series. (No surprise there, either.) The Prius is also the top-selling vehicle in a slew of zip codes across the country with six-figure incomes, according to In Atherton, right outside of San Francisco (average income: $768,000), the Prius came in behind the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. The E-Class and the BMW X5, in fact, are to the wealthy what yo-yos were to my 5th grade class: everybody's gotta have one, and you'll be laughed out of Manhattan Fashion Week if you don't. But the only hybrid on the list is the Prius, which surely gives Toyota marketers the glorious ability to tout its "cross-demographic appeal."
"For affluent buyers who live in places where environmental concerns reign supreme," said Kristen Andersson, a TrueCar analyst, "the Toyota Prius is the ultimate status symbol in eco-luxury." Other cheap cars favored by the rich are the Volkswagen Jetta, the Jeep Wrangler in Greenwich, Connecticut, the Honda CR-V and the Honda Accord. Hey, sometimes when your Porsche Panamera (on the list in Atherton and Fisher Island, Florida) is in the shop getting its Mansory "aerodynamic package" installed (retail price: $80,000), you need honest, anonymous transportation. Conclusions come readily to mind. If you haven't seen the South Park episode lampooning the rise of hybrids among smug, eco-conscious upper-tax-bracketeers, it's highly recommended. Also, there's no word on whether Mister Romney has referred to owning "a couple of Priuses" at his La Jolla (average income: $113,521) abode. Source: TrueCar