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After three years that saw a diesel, a plug-in and a natural gas vehicle win Green Car Journal's Green Car of the Year award, the Ford Fusion won the title this year at the start of the second day of the LA Auto Show. The Fusion was nominated in part because it has a variety of powertrain options: hybrid, plug-in hybrid and an EcoBoost gas engine.

The other 2013 finalists included the Dodge Dart Aero, Ford C-Max, Mazda CX-5 Skyactiv and Toyota Prius C. For what it's worth, the C-Max won the informal Autoblog/AutoblogGreen poll for 2013 with 31.5 percent of the vote. The official votes were tallied by a panel of judges of "the nation's top environmental leaders," car freaks like Jay Leno and the GCJ staff. GCJ's Ron Cogan said the winner was chose by majority vote.

Cogan also said that the award (and his magazine) have never been about vehicles that eke out mileage gains by stripping away the joy of driving. The method by which the five finalists are chosen is somewhat shrouded in mystery, but the Tesla Model S was left off the list due to its high price and the current unavailability of the base model. He said:

The Tesla Model S offers everything, by all reports. What it doesn't offer are things that are crucial to the Green Car Of The Year program, which are different than Motor Trend's Car of the Year or Yahoo Autos. We deal specifically in cars you can buy and buy now and vehicles that are affordable enough that you can buy them. We deal in vehicles that are available in significant enough numbers so you actually have quantifiable emissions reductions and oil displacement. It doesn't have to be a mass produced car in the sense that it's one of the best-selling cars, but it does have to be available. And, right now, the Tesla Model S, as good as it is, is the Signature Series at $95,000 to $105,000. That's not accessible. And the base model is not being delivered.

Last year, the Green Car of the Year winner was the Honda Civic Natural Gas. Previous winners include the Chevrolet Volt (2011), the Audi A3 TDI (2010), the Volkswagen Jetta TDI (2009) and the Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid (2008).

Continue reading Ford Fusion wins 2013 Green Car Of The Year

Ford Fusion wins 2013 Green Car Of The Year originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 29 Nov 2012 14:39:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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