Green Car Journal has announced its five finalists for the 2011 Green Car of the Year and for the first time the group includes two primarily electric-drive vehicles(Chevrolet Volt, Nissan LEAF) in addition to two hybrids(Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, Lincoln MKZ Hybrid) and a high mile-per-gallon, gasoline internal combustion engine (Ford Fiesta).
Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal and editor of GreenCar.com said, “It wasn’t long ago when electric drive was a novelty. Now, it’s expected that auto manufacturers will include electric drive in some form among their model offerings.”
Factors considered for the selection of potential nominees included "vehicles employing all fuels and technologies in the effort to raise the bar in environmental performance, such as high efficiency gasoline internal combustion, advanced diesel, hybrids, electrics and vehicles capable of running on alternative fuels." According to the Journal's criteria, nominees must "stand out as exemplary models that forward environmental performance in meaningful and quantifiable ways." Market 'significance' and 'newness' are also factors. And of course all nominees had to be available for sale to consumers by January 1 of this year.
In addition to Green Car Journal's editors, jurors include leaders of national environmental organizations, including Carl Pope, chairman of the Sierra Club; Frances Beinecke, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council; Jean-Michel Cousteau, president of Ocean Futures Society and Matt Petersen, president of Global Green USA. Also, Jay Leno, noted auto enthusiast and host of the "Tonight Show," as well as "automotive icon" Carroll Shelby.
The award winner will be announced during a press conference at the LA Auto Show Press Days on Nov. 18.
Photo credit: Green Car Journal