Green Test Drive: Mazda3 gets surprising mileage using a blend of old and new technologies

Mazda doesn’t make any electric vehicles or hybrid models, but they are pretty darn serious about getting the most out of a gallon of gas. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in its most recent Light Duty Fuel Economy Trends report named Mazda Motor Corporation as the most fuel-efficient auto manufacturer in the U.S. with a fleet-wide adjusted fuel economy performance of 27.1 miles per gallon. Didn’t know that? Read on.

Two cars that make it fun and keep the combined MPG over 30

Drivers shopping for a new car with good fuel economy – 30 mpg or better – know they have to compromise. The sales of cars such as the Toyota Corolla demonstrate that in exchange for gas mileage, car buyers are willing to sacrifice some fun. But here are two cars that offer fun and fuel economy. (A bonus, the Chevy has received the highest possible safety ratings.)

Green Test Drive: 2013 Kia Rio SX

Those who doubt evolution just need slide behind the wheel of a Kia Rio – a dramatically different car than it was 10 years ago, shaped by the survival-of-the-fittest business model of the automobile industry. The 2013 Kia Rio SX – the highest of three available trims – may have you ponder what constitutes a luxury car.

Electric car enthusiasts get charged up at Plug In Day

Say what you will about the high costs and short ranges of electric vehicles , a good many people who’ve had the privilege of driving or owning one are awestruck in love with them.

We caught up with members of the unofficial EV admiration society at a National Plug In Day celebration in Frisco, Texas on Sunday. The event, one of dozens around the country, showcased commercially available EVs like the Chevrolet Volt and the Nissan Leaf, as well as cars just entering production, such as the elegant Karma by Fisker, the popular Prius Plug-In Hybrid (available in selected states) and the petite Mitsubishi MiEV.

Environmental groups say new fuel economy standards will reduce US oil dependence and air pollution

New gasoline standards for cars and light trucks set by the US Department of Transportation and the US EPA won final approval on Tuesday after several months of public review and hearings.

The new mileage standards will require that American cars get an average of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. The EPA touted the change as a near doubling of fuel efficiency for cars, and predicted the effect on consumers would be like lowering the price of gasoline by $1 a gallon. Overall, the measure will save consumers more than $1.7 trillion at the gas pump and reduce U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels, according to the EPA.

High speed rail: Getting Texas on track

If enthusiasm were dollars, high speed rail would be zooming across in Texas.
There has been no shortage of advocates ready to envision and mock-up plans for fast passenger trains in the Lone Star state, starting back in the energy-crisis years of the 1970s and building steam throughout the 1980s when a group called the Texas Railroad Transportation Company (TRTC) devised a plan for the “Texas Triangle,” a 750-mile train route connecting Dallas/Fort Worth to San Antonio and Houston.

Efficiency, baby, efficiency: NRDC report touts better cars as solution to oil woes

Consumers looking for relief from high gasoline prices are finding solutions in the US car market, according to a new report by the Natural Resources Defense Council.
US car buyers can choose from among 57 models of energy-efficient cars and trucks in showrooms today. That’s more than double the 27 efficient models that were available in the spring of 2009.

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