When assembling a list of green cars from Honda, the usual suspects include vehicles like the Insight, Civic Hybrid and perhaps even the FCX Clarity. Often overlooked, though no less green, is the natural gas-fueled Civic GX. In fact, the CNG-powered GX has topped the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy's (ACEEE) list of greenest vehicles in land for seven years and counting. The GX is also the only mass-market compressed natural gas vehicle available in the U.S. But with reported sales of less than 2,000 GXs in 2009, using the term "mass-market" doesn't seem quite right.
Just days ago, Honda confirmed that its natural gas-burning GX model would still be offered when the next-gen Civic debuts for the 2012 year. But the story doesn't end there. Elmer Hardey, Honda's senior manager of alternative vehicles, spoke with the folks over at Hybrid Cars and outlined the company's plans for the GX in this way:
Hardey closed the interview with this, "There's no chance that Honda will develop a new dedicated model that runs on CNG."Anticipating growth in sales of CNG vehicles, not only in California but nationwide. We're considering doubling sales in the next two- to three-year horizon. If a customer wants to move away from petroleum, then CNG and electric vehicles are a good choice. Obviously, battery electric vehicles are a further choice away from petroleum than a hybrid or plug-in hybrid. Maybe you want to move away from oil and use a U.S.-based resource. Natural gas fits that need very effectively