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Guide to green cars, trucks released

'The Green Guide to Cars and Trucks': A hall of fame. . . And shame   
March 19, 1998
Web posted at: 2:51 a.m. EST (0751 GMT)

By Environmental News Network staff

(ENN) -- Environmentalists in the market for a new car have some reading to do before they head out for the lots. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy released the Green Guide to Cars and Trucks Tuesday which ranks automobiles by their environmentally responsible qualities.

The guide contains "Green Score" rankings for every 1998 vehicle sold in the United States. The score is based on a vehicle's air pollution health costs, global warming pollution, and other specifications.

The General Motors EV-1 tops the list of the 12 greenest vehicles in 1998. Other notable cars in the top 12 include the Honda Civic GX CNG which runs on natural gas and meets ultra-low emission vehicle standards, the Mitsubishi Mirage and the Chevrolet Metro.

Topping the list of the 12 worst vehicles for the environment in 1998 is the Lincoln Navigator, followed closely by the Ferrari 550. Other environmentally irresponsible cars include the Dodge Ram 1500 Pickup, Land Rover Range Rover and the Lamborghini DB123/144 Diablo.

"Our guide fills a void in current consumer car-buying information," stated John DeCicco, ACEEE's Transportation Program Director and an author of the Green Guide. "Consumers can now comparison shop with the environment in mind."

This information will "empower consumers to make greener choices" said DeCicco.

Included in the guide:

  • The "Best of 1998" featuring the greenest models by vehicle class -- compact, mid-size, large cars; vans; pickups and sport utilities

  • The top 12 overall greenest vehicles in 1998

  • The 12 worst vehicles for the environment in 1998

  • Listings for electric and alternatively fueled vehicles, as well as gasoline and diesel vehicles

  • Information on the environmental impacts of motor vehicles, including global warming and the health effects of vehicle pollution

Cleaner, greener cars have become a focus for the major automobile makers in light of growing public concern over the climate-threatening effects of fossil fuel use.

Automakers have begun offering models that meet tighter tailpipe pollution standards, such as low emission vehicles and ultra-low emission vehicles. Cars and trucks that run on electricity and other alternative fuels are also becoming available.

"The Green Guide to Cars and Trucks covers it all and helps buyers cut through the alphabet soup of 'LEVs' and 'MPGs,'" said Martin Thomas, ACEEE research assistant and co-author. "Not all options are available everywhere, but the Green Guide makes it easy to find the greenest model that meets your needs."

"By greener we mean cleaner and more fuel efficient," said DeCicco, "so greener cars will often save consumers money as well."

According to Jack Gillis, public affairs director of the Consumer Federation of America and author of The Car Book, "Just as auto safety emerged as a major selling point in the 1980s, we are convinced that environmental performance will be a major buying factor in the future."

"We've started the Green Guide in anticipation of a 'Green Revolution' in automotive technology. By providing Green Scores for every model, we hope to influence consumer choice and encourage automakers to provide cleaner and more fuel-efficient vehicles," said Howard Geller, executive director of ACEEE.

Copyright 1998, Environmental News Network, All Rights Reserved


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