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“Are we closer today than ten years ago to the widespread use of hybrid cars, truck and alternative fuels” ? Absolutely.

We are at a point in the evolution of green cars where it is now realistic that at some point in the future, they will be the most widely used car. The quality of these cars is constantly improving and the latest news about these vehicles means we may be closer to the world using predominately environmentally friendly cars than we think. Electric & Hybrid cars are growing in popularity and even solar powered cars don’t seem as farfetched these days based on the latest news from Ford.
The reasons to buy a green car makes a lot more sense now than it would have 10 years ago. The current batch of vehicles have are more efficient and now have a range of up to 265 miles and are available for as little as $22,000.
Of course, a lot of people don’t have a green car yet but there is still a lot you can do to have a positive impact on the environment. For example, car pooling with friends and even leaving your car at home two days a week will reduce greenhouse emissions by an average of two tons per year.

​It’s Matt Allan… ​
Hybrid Cars and Alternative Energy
Crossline on the Fort

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5 Great Fleet Vehicle Picks

On December 19, 2013, in Fuel Efficiency, Managed Fleets, by allisonmreilly
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This is a guest post from Bob Carlson. Bob retired last year from a 40-year career teaching high school math. Blogging keeps him out of trouble with the wife.

For fleet operators looking to add vehicles to their fleet, the overall cost of maintaining and operating any size vehicle is a major consideration. Any decent fleet operator is always looking for ways to cut costs—for instance, some fleet owners are installing nitrogen-filled tires on their vehicles, thanks to their reliability under heavy use and their fuel-saving potential. The data analysis firm Vincentric recently held its annual Best Fleet Value awards, highlighting the top models for fleet operators based on a variety of factors, including operating and opportunity costs. Here are five notable vehicles that got a nod for great value in their respective categories:

Ford C-Max Energi SEL

Photo by Mariordo via Wikimedia Commons

The C-Max Energi is one of several hybrids on Vincentric’s list, but it’s the only plug-in hybrid that made the cut. The C-Max offers the lowest taxes and opportunity costs of all the current picks over the three-year ownership period, but offers higher-than-average fuel costs in its segment.

Ford F-150 XL Reg Cab 2WD

Photo by IFCAR via Flickr

The F-150 isn’t just a hit with consumers in search of a reliable and dependable truck. Fleet buyers also see the half-ton full-size pickup truck’s proven credentials in the field and elsewhere, as well as its lower-than-average insurance, maintenance and operating costs. The F-150 also offers a unique fuel-saving proposition in the form of the 3.5-liter EcoBoost six-cylinder engine, capable of achieving an EPA-estimated 16 mpg city and 22 mpg highway in two-wheel drive guise. However, it remains to be seen how fleets will cope financially or time-wise with the engine’s added complexity. According to Ford, sales of the EcoBoost-equipped F-150 have already reached 400,000 units in the United States.

Nissan Leaf S

Photo by Tennen-Gas via Wikimedia Commons

According to data from Vincentric, the Leaf S offers better-than-average depreciation and extraordinarily low taxes due to federal and state incentives, but it’s on par with others in its segment in terms of fuel, maintenance and repair costs. The Leaf’s all-electric drivetrain also provides fleets with an economical way to shrink their carbon footprint and flex their eco-friendly credentials.

Buick Enclave Convenience FWD

Photo by IFCAR via Flickr

The Enclave is one of four Buicks that made the cut, taking top honors in the convenience four-door utility segment. Vincentric notes that Buick’s full-size crossover offered the lowest lifecycle costs in 15 of its 20 deciding criteria. Not only does it offer the lowest three-year ownership costs across the board, it also surprises many premium fleet owners with its exceptional level of luxury and comfort.

Hyundai Sonata GLS 2.4

Photo by IFCAR via Wikimedia Commons

For 2013, the Sonata proves itself as a competent choice in the mid-size sedan segment, especially in the face of strong competition from Ford and Toyota. As with last year’s Sonata, the 2013 model offers three-year fuel, depreciation and repair costs that are well-below segment averages.

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5 Best Eco-Friendly Family Cars

On May 23, 2013, in Fuel Efficiency, Guest Posts, Hybrid Tires, by allisonmreilly
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eco-friendly vehiclesThis is a guest post from Kristine Vicencio.

Transporting your family is a big deal. Not only do you need a vehicle that allows plenty of space to transport at least more than two people, you need one that is safe and dependable. Even more ideal would be a vehicle that is also eco-friendly. While it may sound too good to be true, eco-friendly family cars are out there. Here are five of the best currently available, curated with the assistance of Parkers, a UK website that helps consumers research cars, insurance and finance.

Nissan Leaf: The Nissan Leaf, although slightly smaller making it possibly not the best fit for a very large family, the Leaf is one of the first entirely electrical vehicles made by Nissan. thought to be a zero-emission car, the Nissan Leaf can go 80 miles on one charge. Although the Nissan Leaf was first released in 2012, the Leaf has quickly become popular and has characteristics that make it ideal for smaller families looking for an environmentally friendly vehicle. Starting at $32,500, the Nissan Leaf is also fairly affordable.

Toyota Prius: Although the Prius may often be thought to be small, it’s actually considered a mid-sized sedan and is much roomier than it looks from the outside. The Toyota Prius is electric and can be entirely recharged within only a few hours, making it an extremely efficient car for families. Even better, the Prius has solid safety features such as a pre-collision system and lane keep assist, which makes it a very attractive eco-friendly car for families.

Toyota RAV4 EV: A nice size for larger families, this nifty SUV is battery-powered and successfully combines the spacious interior of a SUV without the gas-guzzling property. The Toyota RAV4 EV has a high-performance battery that is completely electric and can go approximately 100 miles on a single charge. An excellent choice for larger families, this Toyota SUV is affordable and environmentally friendly.

Ford Escape Hybrid: Both roomy and eco-friendly, the Ford Escape Hybrid has some of the best fuel economy ratings for SUVs in its class. In addition to its excellent fuel economy, the Ford Escape Hybrid is also roomy with advanced technological features that make it a perfect fit for families looking for an eco-friendly, yet convenient and larger vehicle.

Chevrolet Equinox: One of the most popular compact SUVs, the Chevrolet Equinox is another fantastic options for larger families seeking an environmentally friendly option. With an option of a V6 engine, the Chevrolet Equinox offers both power and fuel efficiency. Of course, there’s also the option of four-cylinder option as well. The Equinox also has excellent reliability scores making it an attractive prospect for families seeking a larger eco-friendly option.

Maybe now is the time to sell and change to something leaner, greener and cheaper to run? As you can see, there are plenty of vehicles on the market right now that will meet those basic requirements.

If you want to learn more about going green and driving hybrid vehicles (and hybrid tires), then check out our latest white paper on nitrogen tire inflation: 9 Debunked Myths on Nitrogen Tire Inflation. Click the link to download this white paper and to learn how nitrogen tire inflation can help you improve fuel efficiency and tire life.

Related Links:

3 Green Lights Tips for Going Green

How Older Drivers Can Lower Insurance Rates

3 Things You Need to Know about Buying New Tires

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Hybrid Tires for Hybrid Vehicles

On June 30, 2011, in Hybrid Tires, Nitrogen Tire Inflation, by allisonmreilly
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Hybrid cars are the newest thing in consumer vehicles, and are growing in popularity. Electric, plug-in and hybrid vehicles could garner a collective 90 percent market share by 2030, according a Clean Energy Innovation Study. Here’s an infographic from the Atlantic that shows how a hybrid vehicle works and what all the fuss is about:

The only thing missing from these hybrid vehicles are some hybrid tires, tires that help the environment as much as the cars do. Sure, there are low-resistance tires that are specific to hybrids, but these tires aren’t hybrid in and of themselves and actually don’t perform very well. One way to get hybrid tires is to make them yourself with nitrogen tire inflation. By putting nitrogen in your tires instead of regular air, you extend the life of the tire (meaning less tires in landfills) and improve your fuel efficiency (meaning less use of fossil fuels and a smaller carbon footprint).

Nitrogen tire inflation is something that’s already being used by NASCAR, the airline industry, and the military, so it’s not at all a new concept or a new technology. The new part about it is that more and more consumer drivers are putting nitrogen in their tires. And why not? Studies show that it’s a good practice for tire maintenance in the long run. If you want inflate your tires with nitrogen, then a good brand is Nitrofleet99, which serves the consumer market in many locations across the country.

So, what do you say? If you’re driving a hybrid vehicle, why not drive it on hybrid tires as well?

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