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Bankrate's 2007 New Car Guide
Going green
Environmental concerns are bringing major changes -- right down to the cars we drive.
Going green
Green-fuel cars almost here -- at a price
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Phoenix Electric SUT (sport utility truck): This double-cab short-bed pickup by California-based Phoenix Motor Cars seats five and will sell for $47,500. It gets about 130 miles on a charge and can reach speeds of up to 95 mph, according to the company. Phoenix is first targeting the California fleet market (for it's 2010 release), but also has a waiting list for consumers, says Corey Franks, a program manager with the automaker. There are two ways to recharge the lithium titanate battery: with your 220-volt wall outlet (think clothes dryer), a complete recharge takes five to six hours; or just 10 minutes with the off-board charger used in fleet/commercial locations. Cost to refuel: about $3, says Franks.

Miles Electric Vehicles' Miles XS500: California-based Miles Electric Vehicles is developing a battery-powered four-door family sedan slated to sell for between $30,000 and $35,000 when it becomes available sometime in 2009. Formerly known as the "Javlon" earlier in its inception, it has a Chinese-made chassis and is powered by a lithium-ion battery. The range on a full charge is in the vicinity of 125-plus miles, says Betsy Isroelit, a spokeswoman for the company. It can reach top speeds of about 85 mph. Time for a full charge: about six hours, according to the company. Miles Electric will start taking orders this fall and also plans to have the sedan in dealerships by the last half of 2008, says Isroelit.

Honda FCX
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Honda FCX: Honda has been leasing its compact-size FCX hydrogen fuel cell cars to individuals in southern California, and in 2008 launched the new FCX Clarity, its "next generation," luxury sedan, says Todd Mittleman, a spokesman for American Honda Motor Co. Inc. According to its Web site, Honda plans on leasing 200 of these models in the first three years of its program. Again, the leases will only be available to those who reside in southern California and who don't mind paying the $600 a month for three years. The model runs on gaseous hydrogen and gets about 270 miles to the tank, he says. With top speeds of 100 mph, Mittleman says, "it's a wonderful drive."

-- Updated: July 12, 2008
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