The Toyota Prius was the top-seller in Japan for the 14th month in a row, according to the monthly brand ranking data from the Japan Automobile Dealers Association.

Sales of the Prius hit 34,456 units in July, up 24.3% year-on-year. In second place was the Honda Fit, which saw its sales climb 6.6% to 18,141 units, followed by the Toyota Vitz in third with 15,267 units, up 23.5%.

Sales of hybrid cars and energy-efficient smaller models were strong in July, the Nikkei noted, as consumers rushed to buy such cars before the September expiration of subsidies for environmentally friendly cars. Four of the top ten selling models in japan in July were minivehicles.

In the US, the Prius posted July sales of 14,102 units, down 26.4%. Overall in the US, sales of light trucks surged 17.8% in July to 522,428 units according to figures from Autodata, representing 50% of the new vehicle market, up from 44% of the new vehicle market in July 2009.