From: Paul Schaefer, ENN
Published December 20, 2007 12:19 PM

Survey: Online Hybrid Car Searches Rise

RICHMOND, Va. - At a time of rising gas prices, a new consumer survey says - not surprisingly - that online searches for hybrid cars are also rising. Examples of the most searched hybrid cars include the Ford Escape Hybrid, Toyota Prius and Toyota Camry Hybrid. These hybrids are climbing in popularity based on recent month- to-month trends of searches for hybrid cars. The survey was done by CarMax, an online auto sales company.  November 2007 data indicated that searches for hybrid cars have increased 10% over last year and 43% from October to November.

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Tom Folliard, president and chief executive officer of CarMax says, "Hybrid cars are increasingly making an impression on car shoppers and searches on carmax.com are reflecting that."

The following hybrid cars experienced the largest increases in carmax.com search activity:

Make/Model October to November 2007 Increase
Ford Escape Hybrid 108%
Toyota Prius 56%
Toyota Camry Hybrid 48%

Shoppers use carmax.com to search the company's inventory of more than 25,000 used and new vehicles, including hybrid cars. The website showcases each vehicle with multiple photos, the no-haggle price and information on features, options, fuel economy and customer reviews. In fiscal 2007, carmax.com averaged more than four million visits per month. Additionally, approximately 70 percent of in-store customers visited the website before coming to the store.

About CarMax

CarMax, a Fortune 500 company and one of the Fortune 2007 "100 Best Companies to Work For," is the nation's largest retailer of used cars. Headquartered in Richmond, Va., CarMax currently operates 88 used car superstores in 41 markets. The CarMax consumer offer is structured around four customer benefits: low, no-haggle prices; a broad selection; high quality vehicles; and customer-friendly service. During the twelve months ended February 28, 2007, the company retailed 337,021 used vehicles and sold 208,959 wholesale vehicles at its in-store auctions. For more information, access the CarMax website at http://www.carmax.com/.

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