Archive for September, 2010


The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed new window stickers for all cars/trucks sold in the United States.  The mandates come from a 2007 law (not implemented by the Bush Administration) that requires labels to put a new vehicle in context with the rest of the herd.  The EPA’s mandate must take into account (1) fuel economy, (2) greenhouse gasses and (3) smog-forming pollutants.  It also must contextualize your average car/truck with a gasoline-fueled internal combustion engine with EVs, hybrids and advanced clean diesels.

One of two new stickers assigns letter grades (remember elementary school?) from A+ to D-.   It’s pretty easy to guess which car gets the highest and lowest grades.  A pure EV (electric vehicle), like the Nissan Leaf, will get an A+ (117  mpg and higher) while my Italian friends, Lamborghini and Ferrari, would get the D-.

Proposed EPA-DOT Window Sticker with Letter Grade

Note that the sticker even has a QR Code™ that can be read by your smartphone to get even more information about the car and the EPA’s ratings.

A plug-in hybrid, rated at the equivalent of 59 – 116 mpg, like the upcoming Chevy Volt (it has an internal combustion engine that runs a generator to juice the batteries to give it an extended range) would get an A.   “Normal” hybrids like the Toyota Prius and the Ford Fusion would earn an A-.  Lesser hybrids, like the Nissan Altima, Ford Escape and Toyota Camry will have to sit in the second row and with a B+. (more…)

Advertisement

This is the first ad from MINI for the new Countryman SUV.  It’s really a great, fun ride.  MINI is pitching the Countryman to young families as an alternative to a gigantic SUV that couples usually get with a first baby.  It’s also being pitched to Generation Y who are just out to have fun with friends.  I’m not sure how well four adults will fit in the Countryman, but everyone looks like they have room in the commercial (of course).