Some hybrids are not a green as they seem, interest group saysMon, 18 Jul 2011 00:00:00 -0700
Car buyers who think they are helping the planet by choosing a hybrid vehicle to aid in cutting emissions don't always get the biggest bang for their buck, according to an environmental interest group.
A report from the Union of Concerned Scientists shows that some hybrids come at a much higher price tag than their similarly equipped, conventional-powertrain counterparts, yet offer little in the way of environmental gain.
These not-so-green hybrids compromise their value or eco-friendliness in a variety of ways.
For example, rarely is the hybrid powertrian offered on a vehicle's base model. That forces customers to take premium features that are packed with the hybrid version, adding to hybrid's price disadvantage.
Other times, a hybrid might not be built to achieve fuel-saving performance in the most cost-effective manner.
A UCS-released hybrid scorecard rates the green credentials of some popular hybrid models from "superior" to "very poor." According to the group, the biggest green offenders are:
-- Volkswagen Touareg hybrid
-- BMW X6 ActiveHybrid
-- Chevrolet Silverado 2WD hybrid
-- BMW 750i ActiveHybrid
-- Lexus LS 600h L
The vehicles that score highest in hybrid value are:
-- Lexus CT 200 h
-- Lincoln MKZ hybrid
-- Mercedes-Benz S500 hybrid
-- Toyota Prius
-- Ford Fusion hybrid
-- Honda Civic hybrid
-- Honda CR-Z
Have a hybrid vehicle in mind? Check out the full scorecard.
By Michelle Koueiter