• Kyodo

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Toyota Motor Corp.’s Aqua hybrid became the nation’s best-selling car in April after notching a 13.7 percent jump in sales to 15,555 units from a year earlier, industry bodies said Monday.

Honda Motor Co.’s N-Box came in second after a 12.1 percent plunge in sales to 10,218 units caused by last month’s rise in the minivehicle tax, which significantly hurt demand.

Minivehicles, powered by engines no larger than 660cc, secured two of the top five sales slots in April, compared with four in March, according to data released by the Japan Automobile Dealers Association and the Japan Light Motor Vehicle and Motorcycle Association.

Suzuki Motor Corp.’s Hustler minicar was third after sales jumped 40.2 percent to 10,015 units. Toyota’s Prius hybrid and Honda’s Fit ranked fourth and fifth, respectively.

Sales of minivehicles in the top 10, except the Hustler, fell compared with the previous year. Sales of the Aqua and Prius rose as the negative impact of the 3-point consumption tax hike to 8 percent in April last year receded.

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