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January 14, 2008

NAIAS Day Two - Green, Green is Green They Say in Detroit

100yrlogo My day started out at the GM OnStar Radio Station with a rather heated debate on live radio with Cliff Banks of Wards Dealer Business, host Harry Douglas of Car Concerns, Peter Oppewall of,  a very informative site about alternatives in transportation,  and myself about whether car buyers really want green cars or are we being forced into greener more eco-friendly choices by our government, 35 MPH cafe standards and auto makers or do car buyers really care more about fuel economy, less dependence on petroleum based fuels or protecting the environment, how about you??? Almost every manufacture here in Detroit during NAIAS is introducing or chattering about their fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles announced and/or coming soon during this show.

A very strong message that the auto makers  as a whole are committed to giving us all many more green car choices, very encouraging and exciting stuff! Do you want to go green and will you pay a bit more for a green vehicle even if you will make it back over the life of the vehicle in cost savings on fuel? There are some real beauties just on the horizon......please leave your comments on this topic!

Troy Clarke, North American President of GM and Jill Lajdziak,General Manager of Saturn, absolutely sparkling in her winter white suit and looking as proud a new mother who just gave birth to triplets and was on hand today to launch two new products and a very cool looking concept:

Saturn_twomodeWorld Debut  - 2009 SATURN VUE GREEN LINE 2 MODE HYBRID

The Vue Green Line 2 Mode will deliver an estimated 50-percent fuel economy increase over the non-hybrid V-6 Vue. It also is expected to have a driving range of more than 500 miles (800 km).
GM’s Advanced Hybrid Technology Delivers Up To 50-Percent Fuel Economy Increase With No Compromises in Performance, Capability
First brand to offer two hybrid options on the same model
Third hybrid in Saturn’s portfolio
Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (ATPZEV)

SATURN VUE GREEN LINE PLUG-IN HYBRID SUV MAY BEGIN PRODUCTION IN 2010 - Expected to be First Commercially Available, OEM-produced Plug-in Hybrid

Sleek, sporty compact concept vehicle hints at Saturn’s future design direction
Extended-range electric vehicle features GM’s E-Flex System and provides up to 34 miles of all-electric, emissions-free range
Customer-friendly innovations include FlexDoors® and FlexLoad® features

My opinion is that the two top auto makers in a battle to get into production the first true all electric is really a race between Toyota and GM .....Over at Toyota, Katsuaki Watanabe, president of Toyota Motor Corporation confirmed that a new clean diesel V8 engine will be offered in both the Tundra and Sequoia in the near future. By 2010, Toyota will accelerate its global plug-in hybrid R&D program. As part of this plan,Toyota will deliver a significant fleet of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles(PHEVs), powered by lithium-ion batteries, to a wide variety of global commercial customers, with many coming to the U.S.

Even Land Rover unveiled a vision of its future at the North American International Auto Show (Detroit AutoShow) with the world debut of the LRX hybrid concept. The LRX is a bold evolution of Land Rover design that indicates the brand's progressive shift into new areas of the market, while remaining true to its core values. As the company prepares to celebrate its 60th anniversary during 2008, the three-door LRX, with its more compact size, lighter weight and sustainability-focused technologies, clearly addresses the needs of a changing world and offers the potential of 120 g/km CO2 emissions.

With all  this green talk you may want to check out Corland Publishing who has launched its third publication, Green Fuels Forecast ( This public online magazine and companion monthly e-newsletter provide breaking news, analysis and original reporting on the global renewable vehicle fuels industry, including developments in E85, cellulosic ethanol, biodiesel and other fuels fortified with biomass.

Green Fuels Forecast is the first open-access, web-based publication to present all sides in the debate over the commercial, technical and agricultural triumphs and challenges presented by renewable fuels. Topics include infrastructure, science, supplier trends, consumer and marketplace acceptance, agricultural/environmental perspectives and the energy industry's effort to bring biofuels to the market. The new site includes original content detailing how automakers are developing powertrains of the future and profiles of new startups chasing the technology behind clean fuels, all while helping consumers understand how renewable fuels will
change what and how they drive.

Stay tuned for NAIAS Day Three tomorrow and some special NAIAS reports on diversity in design, urban car buyers and interviews with some top auto executives I will work on for you all on during my flight  long flight home back to LA on Wednesday afternoon.

Jody DeVere


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