Green cars have been around for longer than most people realize. Frenchman Nicholas Cugnot built what is probably the first steam-powered motor carriage in 1769. It maxed out at six miles per hour.
Brit inventor Goldsworthy Gurney built a steam car – steamers dominated the landscape through the late 1800s – that successfully completed an 85-mile trip. In 10 hours.
Green technology has come a long way since then. Today’s hybrid cars are serious contenders in the automotive landscape, and they’ve recently gotten a boost from just about everyone – from Copenhagen climate conference attendees to President Obama to Jack Bauer.
Kelley Blue Book recently announced its picks for the top 10 green cars of 2010. It considered fuel economy, carbon-dioxide emissions, safety, comfort, and the “fun” factor, in making its decisions.
Here are Kelley Blue Book's Top 10 Green Cars of 2010, in order of fuel efficiency:
1. 2010 Toyota Prius Hybrid, 50 m.p.g. combined
2. 2010 Honda Insight Hybrid, 41 m.p.g. combined
3. 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid, 39 m.p.g. combined
4. 2009 VW Jetta SportWagen TDI, 34 m.p.g. combined
5. 2009 Mini Cooper, 32 m.p.g. combined
6. 2009 Ford Escape Hybrid, 32 m.p.g. combined
7. 2009 Honda Fit, 31 m.p.g. combined
8. 2009 BMW 335d, 27 m.p.g. combined
9. 2009 Toyota Highlander Hybrid, 22 m.p.g. combined
10. 2009 Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid, 21 m.p.g. combined