2010 Green Car of the Year Nominees Announced

Green Car Journal has released its list of the top five most environmentally positive vehicles in the automotive industry today. The five finalists for the publication’s 2010 Green Car of the Year® award are said to exemplify the latest in green technology and, according to the magazine, offer something for everyone.

The five finalists are the Honda Insight, Audi A3 TDI, Toyota Prius, Volkswagen Golf TDI and Mercury Milan Hybrid. Each of this year’s nominees combines affordability, sporty styling, performance and, of course, low emissions and superior fuel economy.

This is the fourth year Green Car Journal has held the competition. Toyota, Honda, Volkswagen and Mercury have been nominated in previous years, but this is the first year that Audi has been honored for its sporty A3 TDI. Last year Ford made the cut with its Fusion Hybrid which offers similar features of the Mercury Milan Hybrid.

The five finalists represent two different, highly effective approaches to reducing CO2 greenhouse gas emissions and improved fuel economy. The Audi A3 and Volkswagen Golf share the TDI moniker which stands for Turbo Direct-Injection clean diesel technology which has become very popular among German automakers and consumers. Both vehicles offer an EPA-rated 30 city/42 highway mpg. The Mercury Milan, Honda Insight and Toyota Prius feature cutting-edge gas-electric hybrid technologies and offer city/highway fuel economies of 41/36, 40/43 and 51/48 miles per gallon, respectively. The Honda Insight is also the lowest priced hybrid vehicle on the market today. Last year the Volkswagen Jetta TDI was named the 2009 Green Car of the Year.

According to Green Car Journal this year’s finalists, as well as the scores of other vehicles considered for the award, show that the auto industry is committed to developing advanced, green automotive technologies and says, It’s a new era for personal transportation and there’s no turning back.

With an MSRP of $29,950, the 2010 Audi A3 TDI offers a new option to American drivers seeking a sporty, economical vehicle combined with legendary German engineering.

Honda Motors has redesigned its original hybrid model, the Insight, to the acclaim of consumers and automotive journalists alike. The Insight offers five-passenger seating and a low MSRP of $19,800-$23,100.

The Mercury Milan Hybrid, the only domestic vehicle to make the top five list, offers upscale appointments and the latest in electronics in a mid-size that delivers high fuel economy. The Milan Hybrid lists for $27,885.

With an MSRP of $21,990-$22,590, the Volkswagen Golf TDI was formerly marketed in the U.S. as the Rabbit. The newly designed Golf offers impressive fuel economy combined with powerful torque and a sporty design and is available in two- or four-door hatch models.

Rounding out the top five list is Toyota’s popular Prius Hybrid, with an MSRP of $22,000-$27,270. The 2010 Prius raises the bar for fuel economy and offers a wealth of technological sophistication.

TOYOTA PRIUS Toyota has set the fuel efficiency bar for years with its Prius hatchback and, as expected, its completely redesigned 2010 model is no exception. The Prius offers an updated yet recognizable look and loads of technical sophistication. MSRP: $22,000-$27,270.

Green Car Journal will announce the winner of its 2010 Green Car of the Year on December 3 at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

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