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Hybrid cars increasingly popular in Germany

Nearly one third of consumers in Germany are planning to buy a hybrid vehicle as their second car, a consumer survey released on Saturday showed.

According to the survey commissioned by Hannover-based tire producer Continental, 30.7% of the respondents said that next time they would certainly or most probably buy a hybrid car with both an electric motor and a combustion engine. Last autumn, only 24.7% said they would consider buying a hybrid car. Continental board member Karl-Thomas Neumann said that tax incentives as well as environmental considerations are the main factors influencing consumers' buying intentions. He also noted that on average consumers are willing to pay €2,300 ($2,949) more for a hybrid car than a conventional car. According to an editorial version of the German Sunday newspaper Welt am Sonntag, which publicized the survey, between 200,000 and 300,000 hybrid cars are sold worldwide annually. Neumann predicted that in the European market alone, sales of hybrid cars will increase by about 100,000 units annually in the coming three years. (