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    Toyota Prius Now Ranks as Greenest Gasoline Car According to ACEEE's Green Book™


    For further information, contact: John DeCicco or Jim Kliesch, 202-429-8873

    Washington, DC (July 12, 2000) -- The Toyota Prius sedan now ranks as the most environmentally friendly gasoline-powered vehicle on sale in the United States according to ACEEE's Green Book™: The Environmental Guide to Cars & Trucks. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), publisher of the Green Book, today adds the Prius to its early Model Year 2001 ratings posted on GreenerCars.com, the online version of its comprehensive environmental guide to all vehicles on the U.S. market.

    "A breakthrough level of fuel economy combined with extremely low tailpipe emissions propels the Prius to the top of our Greener Choices list," says John DeCicco, ACEEE's Green Book™ co-author. Rated at 52 miles-per-gallon (MPG) in the city and 45 MPG on the highway, the Prius goes an average of 60 percent farther on a gallon than other comparably sized sedans. "The Prius's high efficiency offers consumers a way to cut the global warming impact of their driving by 40 percent," notes DeCicco. "It also reduces health-damaging tailpipe pollution by 80 percent compared to a typical new compact car."

    The Prius achieves its high efficiency by using the new technology of hybrid-electric drive. "The advanced gasoline engine in the Prius is a key aspect of the car's high fuel economy and low emissions," says ACEEE's Green Book™ co-author Jim Kliesch. The car generates its own electricity on-board, using this sophisticated engine coupled to its hybrid drivetrain. The Prius never needs to be plugged in, and goes much longer between fill-ups than a conventional car. "The Prius can take you 600 miles between fill-ups in city driving," estimates Kliesch. "Consumers will not only save fuel costs while cutting pollution, but also have the added convenience of less frequent trips to the gas station."

    As the world's first mass-produced hybrid -- sold in Japan since December 1997 -- the Prius now joins the Honda Insight as the only two hybrids available in the United States. The Honda Insight is a sporty two-seater with a manual transmission, yielding a higher fuel economy than the Prius. The Prius is a full-featured, five-passenger family sedan and it also passes California's Super-Ultra-Low Emissions Vehicle (SULEV) test. This SULEV certification pushes its Green Score up to 50, edging out the Insight, which scores 47. ACEEE's Green Book rating system accounts for both health-threatening tailpipe pollution and global warming emissions.

    "In terms of our green ratings, only the GM EV1 plug-in electric car and Honda's natural-gas powered Civic GX sedan out-score the Toyota Prius," states DeCicco. "Even though it is still powered by gasoline, the Prius offers environmental performance nearly as good as today's alternative technologies, but in a much more widely available and affordable package."

    ACEEE's Green Book is available online at GreenerCars.com, where consumers can search an interactive database and build custom lists for comparing vehicles. Monthly and annual subscriptions, including updates via the website, are available. The print edition of ACEEE's Green Book™: The Environmental Guide to Cars & Trucks may be ordered through major online booksellers or directly from GreenerCars.com for $8.95 plus $5.00 shipping and handling. For further information and bulk sales discounts, contact:

    ACEEE Publications
    1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW Suite 801
    Washington, DC 20036
    Phone: 202-429-0063
    Fax: 202-429-0193
    Email: ace3pubs@ix.netcom.com
    Website: www.aceee.org

    The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy is an independent, non-profit research group dedicated to advancing energy efficiency as a means of protecting the environment and strengthening the economy. For more information, see our website at www.aceee.org.

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