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The LA Auto Show's 5 Most Exciting Green Cars

It was really difficult to pick the 5 most exciting green cars from this years auto show, primarily because I didn't know whether to viagra online cheap focus on the concepts or those cars already on showroom floors or in the pipeline for the cialis delivered overnight near future. That said, I think you will find my choice a mix of these two categories, because as important as it is to have green options right now, there's no denying that the future is looking even brighter.

Here are my top from, from least to most exciting:

5. Nissan Cube

It may seem strange to put the Nissan Cube on a list like this because it will only get a shade above 30 mpg for it's EPA rating, but I think the Cube represents a new kind of car for the U.S. Sure, Scion has had the xB for several years and has already reached quite a few buyers, but it's still new to see such an untraditional car coming from a major brand in the U.S. I have seen these cars in Japan, and along with the Kei-class of cars, they represent a dramatically different way to look at personal transportation.

The Cube seats 5 and has a relatively small foot print and high gas mileage, but it's boxy shape eschews traditional styling for maximum utility. You may not like how it looks, but there's no denying that the car can hold a lot and it takes a lot of levitra 10mg the energy out of the old "I bought an SUV so I could haul my sports equipment" argument. The Cube has incredible utility and I hope the concept of efficient use of space catches hold in the U.S. market.

4. Honda FC Sport

The FC Sport is just a design concept, but that doesn't mean we should be any less excited about it. Honda is well-known for creating the first certified hydrogen fuel cell car, and is continuing that tradition of innovation by trying to show consumers that not only is hydrogen eco-cool, but it can be just plain cool.

By highlighting the world premiere of this concept at the LA Auto Show, Honda stuck their necks out there to show there is still a future in green technology even with the turmoil in the auto industry. Above that, they are showing that design can be radically altered when new power plants are employed in the automotive industry. Clearly, cars like the FCX Clarity are designed for maximum consumer acceptance and that's how it can be repurposed so easily as the basis for the new Insight Concept. This, however, does not mean that the structure of fuel cell technology cannot be made to house an attractive, futuristic, and aerodynamic design, as embodied by the FC Sport.

3. Mitsubishi i MiEV

While the female viagra i MiEV will not be for sale in the United States for a least a few years, it will be on sale in Japan next summer for ~$40k (4 million yen) and represents the first electric from a major manufacturer to hit the streets in quantity.

However, the real highlight of real cialis online without prescription the i MiEV from the auto show was my personal test drive. A lot of stigma surrounds electric vehicles in this country, and that's probably because no one has had the ability to actually drive one yet. But I can no say, first hand, that if electric cars represent the future of transportation in the United States, that future will not be slow, sluggish, or sloppy. The i MiEV accelerates better than the average economy car and has great handling, while at the same time being incredibly roomy and not feeling as cheap as many other small cars would.


Though I missed my chance to test drive the MINI E during its world premiere at the LA Auto Show, there is no shortness of excitement over the car that will be soon leased to hundreds of people in both California and get viagra perscription online New York. The BMW Group is very serious about this car and the future of electric vehicles, and has attacked the problem by creating are car that is first off fun and exciting to drive, and secondly efficient and environmentally friendly.

Smart is currently working on their own electric offering, but the MINI E is the first serious electric to come out of the European market, and it's exciting that it will be sold in the United States rather than restricted solely to the European markets.

1. Honda Insight Concept

I picked the Honda Insight Concept as the most exciting green car from the LA Auto Show because it will be available in quantity in the U.S. market starting in the Spring of 2009. I'm incredibly excited about the levitra canada generic possibility of seeing a car on showroom floors that not only gets close to 50 mpg, but will start at just $18,500.

In these tough economic times, we see that auto market really taking a heavy hit, and that includes hybrid cars, even with their popularity on the rise. This is primarily because hybrids are expensive. Even if your investment will be paid back over the life of the car in fuel savings, it's increasingly hard to put over $20k up front for a car that you are unsure how long you will keep it for. The new Insight will break that price barrier and open the car and hybrid technology to a new market of india generic viagra families, first time buyers, and generally thrifty individuals.

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Comments (14)Add Comment
Great choice for #1
written by Yoshi, November 26, 2008
I am glad to see you picked the Honda Insight as your #1. I can't wait to get my hands on one of these. I hope the other automakers follow Honda's lead and produce low cost hybrids. With the cost of batteries still making electrics too cost prohibitive, hybrids still have a place as a bridge technology.
written by Ron, November 26, 2008
Definately chosen the best lineup there, top notch cars.

Auto greenwashing
written by Alec, November 26, 2008
For all of the talk of greener developments in the autoindustry, why are we still getting stuck with fewer efficient cars with more uses than just moving 4 passengers around? Car after car, all efficient little haulers are getting killed or replaced by bigger models. Ford killed the Focus Wagon, Scion super-sized the xB, Toyota and Honda don't really have car-based wagons anymore, just upright hatchbacks and small SUVs (neither of which have the hauling capacity of wagons). I was happy to see the only now levitra from canadian pharmacy Nissan Cube here, but we've had better in the past and link for you buy now viagra lost them.
Where's the diesel?
written by stones throw, November 26, 2008
You nail it here: Even if your investment will be paid back over the life of the car in fuel savings, it's increasingly hard to put over $20k up front for a car that you are unsure how long you will keep it for.

Not only that, but the poor design of most hybrids -- the Prius included -- I think keeps a lot of people from jumping on the bandwagon. If you're going to cough up $20k for a car it would be nice if it looked "expensive" (I'm being partially facetious here, I know that what you're paying for is the technology, but still, most folks who have that kind of $ to spend on cars would rather get something sporty). Compare that with comparably-priced, better looking cars such as the non-E, non-diesel MINI: which already gets superb mileage and has the best warranty in its price range. It's all about bang for the buck.

I'm personally glad that the auto show selected the Jetta as their #1, hopefully it will help repair the bad rep of diesel -- which potentially has a bright future in the eco-friendly auto industry. MINI has plans to bring their diesel to the US, as do a number of other manufacturers. Maybe we'll see some hybrid diesels soon, too.
Nissan Cube?
written by Ken, November 28, 2008
How can you pick the Nissan Cube as a green car? Its nothing more than a slightly bigger Chrysler P/T Cruiser, or a small Honda Element.

The Fusion Hybrid will beat the Camry Hybrid by 6 MPG and its not on the list.

Oh, and unless your a movie star or a fleet you will never get your hands on a MiniE or FC Sport and the Mitsubishi isn't even sold here! I mean the Camry CNG hybrid was more realistic than any of these.

Doesn't it make sense to rank cars that people can actually get? How much difference will a car that nobody can get make?

GET REAL and give us something we can use to make informed decisions please.
Make your own
written by Eric, November 28, 2008
Ken, you obviously didn't read the INTRODUCTION paragraph. Get your own website if you want to herbal cialis be the authority on ranking. Don't be a huge dick about it.
Make your own - reply
written by Ken, November 29, 2008
Eric, sure I read the introduction, but that doesn't mean that I can't express an opinion does it? Isn't that the point of posting a comment, or am I missing something?

Seriously though, don't you get frustrated reading about things you can't get? I sure do, and I guess I let too much of that get into my comment.
My tone was a bit harsh, and I apologize for that.
written by haggar, December 04, 2008
You-all is missing the boat. TWO years ago I rented a car in Europe, 5 decent seats and a good hatchback, lots of useful gimmickery (folding seats etc.) and drove this 5 speed manual for a month on winding ardenne roads - hitting 42 miles per gallon !! Who makes it ? Why, FORD of course !
It's called a C-Max Turbodiesel and is called the number one medium sedan in Europe. But of course it would not cross their minds to sell it here - there's more money to be made on F-150's !!
By the way Diesel (CLEAN) is cheaper than gas in Europe because it requires less refining that unleaded - now who would have thought of that ? ;)
written by Richard Davine, December 04, 2008
Coming up next year!!!!
More promises about what's coming up next year.
Just like last year.
Cynical, I know, but does this sound familiar?
written by Alvin Gross, December 04, 2008
I couldn't walk the auto show, but heard there was a compressed air auto there. I am very interested in the car that TATA Motors is supposed to begin shipping to the USA, 2009/2010.
I did see a converted Porsche to compressed air at the show, in Santa Monica, Ca.,in September.
However, it was on 2 passenger and over $50,000.
What is the latest from TATA?
EVs -what else
written by Sinan, December 05, 2008
Diesel has its own problems (particulate matter is one). As far as I'm aware, considering 'well-2-wheels', diesel is not better with emissions, because it requires more energy to produce than regular gasoline.
For this reason I would say that Jetta is not very exciting (diesel has been around for ever, and it's not really solving the problem, is it!?!).
I think most major car companies can now agree that electric motor is the future (whether through hydrogen, or not). So what for me is most exciting, is something that will bring that 'future' closer to us. And that's electric vehicles (not Hybrids, those are just a stepping stone). I have driven a few of the electric vehicles produced for california (EV1, RAV4, RangerEV, HondaEV , etc) and know how good they are. I believe pure electric is much more viable than hydrogen, and thank god they are finally coming on the market AGAIN, and in mass numbers (if all goes well). Too bad that they have barely improved the milage over the last 10 years. Only says that there needs to be much more R&D towards EVs (which, hopefully will be supported by the Obama administration).
cheers ;D
"Coming next year............"
written by Kilgore Trout, December 06, 2008
No Richard you are not too cynical at all. These cars will not ever be produced for a decent price. Gasoline powered cars wear down fast. Electric cares should last a lot longer so will never be made. Coming soon next year...
EV vs. Gasoline
written by Ken, December 07, 2008
While the motors and power electronics in EVs are very reliable, the problem is the batteries. They are expensive, and don't last.

Unfortunately the US has not invested significant amounts in batteries over the past decade, so a lot of the expertise is in Japan, Korea and China were the we choice canada generic viagra governments consider this a key to the future and fund basic research. But since we live in a "free market" economy, the market has decided that we don't need this kind of work here since it doesn't bring returns like the mortgage magic of the past 8 years.
written by Sinan, December 08, 2008
Batteries are also so expensive because there isn't enough demand for them. A major Car maker could secure cheaper prices for batteries, if they made an agreement to buy a certain number of them. That would of course solve the problem of them not lasting (if they were cheap enough to be replaced). But yeah, we need some serious commitment to R&D in the right sectors.

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