Last year, we discovered quite a few interesting green car advocates at Hybridfest in Madison, Wisconsin: a hypermiling Honda Insight driver, someone with a 100mpg+ Prius, and a Hobbit. This year, fans of the gas-electric powertrains will be returning to one of the Midwest's hippest little cities to share their love of their rides now that gas costs as much as it does. The third annual show takes place July 19 and 20 as part of the Dane County Fair.

Actually, the name Hybridfest is a bit misleading. The show will offer a broad look at alternative powertrains for vehicles, including biofueluels, propane, CNG, PHEVs and pure electrics. And here's something that sounds good but I'm not quite sure how accurate it is: "Hybridfest 2008 visitors will learn how to save from 35 cents to $1 per gallon in fuel costs -- or more -- by adding fuel-efficient driving habits," the organizers said in a statement (pasted after the jump. A 25 percent improvement (roughly) in fuel economy, just by drving better? That's a lot.

It's not looking likely that anyone from ABG will be able to make the trek to Madison this summer, so if you will be going and want to contribute some photos or reports from the scene, let us know. We're sure there will be something worth talking about there.

Press Release:
Hybridfest 2008 to Focus on Rising Fuel Prices

3rd Annual Hybrid and Alternative-Fuel Vehicle Show Will Bring Consumers Solutions to High Fuel Costs

MADISON, Wis., June 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As consumers continue to see the effects of rising fuel costs in many aspects of their lives, often the most visible is in their transportation costs. They are frustrated with what they can do, and are looking for options to save money. Hybridfest 2008 will offer the largest selection of clean and sustainable vehicles all in one venue, including hybrids, plug-in hybrids, biodiesel, electric, propane, compressed natural gas and other experimental vehicles. In addition to highlighting new and future vehicle options, Hybridfest 2008's speaker lineup includes people who will share fuel-saving driving tips. Hybridfest 2008 visitors will learn how to save from 35 cents to $1 per gallon in fuel costs -- or more -- by adding fuel-efficient driving habits. Hybridfest 2008 is the one place for consumers to stop and look not only for a fuel-sipping new vehicle, but also for ways to save money with the one they currently drive.

After two years of growing crowds and nationwide publicity, Hybridfest continues to amaze the skeptics who thought that a grassroots event, organized by volunteers, and held in Madison, Wisconsin, would never succeed. The more than 12,000 people who visited Hybridfest 2007 would disagree. One of this nation's largest events dedicated to clean and sustainable transportation will once again be held as part of the Dane County Fair, July 19-20, 2008. Free public admission to Hybridfest 2008 will be included with the purchase of every Dane County Fair ticket, and parking at the fair is free. Most Hybridfest events are scheduled for the air-conditioned comfort of the Alliant Energy Center.

This year's show will include displays by manufacturers, dealers, environmental groups, vendors and exhibitors, as well as vehicle test drives. Toyota Motor Company, the world's largest auto manufacturer and maker of more hybrid vehicles than any other, is proud to again be Hybridfest 2008's Diamond Sponsor. Felix Kramer, founder of CalCars, will join a varied lineup of speakers on a wide assortment of topics including current and future vehicles, as well as various environmental, fuel-efficient driving and other technology issues.

Hybridfest 2008 will again be the "home" for hybrid owners from around North America. Owners travel from all across the country and Canada, many hypermiling to Madison, to meet, teach and learn with other hybrid and fuel-economy enthusiasts like themselves. Visitors will have the unique chance to see incredible vehicles in the Hybridfest Owners' Vehicle Showcase, and to talk with the owners about their real-life driving experiences. Hybridfest 2008 will also feature the nation's premier fuel economy competition, the MPG Challenge, which will again test some of the world's best hypermilers to achieve the best fuel economy over an open-road course. Last year, MPG Challenge winners achieved from 60 to 168 MPG in various vehicle classes.

Hybridfest promotes awareness and understanding of hybrid electric vehicles and other fuel-efficient vehicles and their positive environmental impact. Hybridfest also empowers drivers to improve their driving habits to achieve better fuel efficiency in whatever vehicle they currently drive. Hybridfest is run with volunteers and powered by Powers Productions, LLC.

Hybridfest sponsors for this year's show include:
DIAMOND SPONSOR: Toyota Motor Company
RUBY SPONSOR: General Motors
GOLD SPONSOR: Madison Gas & Electric
SILVER SPONSORS: CleanMPG.com, Quaker Steak and Lube, Wisconsin Public Power, Inc.

[Source: Hybridfest 2008]


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