Greenest and meanest cars in 2008

ACEEE's top green pick for 2008 is the Honda Civic GX, which runs on natural gas. "It does really, really well on the criteria pollutant side of things," says Shruti Vaidyanathan, vehicle analyst for the council. "It also gets pretty good fuel economy."

The Civic GX gets the equivalent of 24 miles per gallon city and 36 mpg highway, according to Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, estimates.

What are some factors that make a car hard on Mother Earth? Diesel fuel, large powerful engines and big vehicles, says Vaidyanathan. Because many offer lower mileage, they also tend to be harder on the wallet, too.

First on the meanest list is the Volkswagen Touareg. The main reason comes down to one word: diesel, says Vaidyanathan. "Diesels have gotten cleaner and cleaner over the years," she says. "But there are still more criteria pollutants being emitted from a diesel than from a gas-powered vehicle."

Of the group's 12 meanest picks for 2008, five run on diesel, five use premium gas and two use regular gas.

Greenest and meanest cars in 2008

1.Honda Civic GX1.Volkswagen Touareg
2.Toyota Prius2.Bugatti Veyron
3.Honda Civic Hybrid3.MB GL320 CDI or R320 CDI
4.SmartForTwo4.Jeep Grand Cherokee
5.Toyota Yaris5.Lamborghini Murcielago
6.Nissan Altima Hybrid6.Mercedes-Benz ML320 CDI
7.Toyota Corolla7.Mercedes-Benz G55 AMG
8.Mini Cooper Clubman8.Hummer H2
9.Ford Focus9.GMC Yukon 2500
10.Toyota Camry Hybrid10.Bentley Azure or Arnage
11.Honda Civic  
12.Honda Fit  
1. Honda Civic GX
Specs:1.8-liter, 4-cylinder, automatic transmission, runs on natural gas



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