The World Car of the Year (WCOTY) awards will again close out the 2010 prize season when they are announced at the New York Auto Show in April. WCOTY hands out honors in four categories: overall best, performance car, design and, of course, green car. The original list of 13 eligible vehicles for this year's World Green Car title has been narrowed down to five that will be put on the ballot for the international jury of automotive journalists to consider.
Through the middle years of the last decade, it became increasingly common for celebrities to show up at events like award ceremonies in the Toyota Prius as a way of demonstrating their support for environmental causes. Now that the realm of the hybrid is expanding beyond the iconic pioneer, other automakers want a piece of that celeb action too. At the Palm Springs International Film Festival that starts this week, stars are getting lifts in a fleet of new hybrids from Mercedes-Benz.
A week after Mercedes-Benz announced details of its first hybrid, battery supplier Continental Automotive has launched production of the battery packs. Mercedes will be the first manufacturer to mass produce a hybrid vehicles with lithium ion batteries. Continental spent €3 million to build the battery manufacturing facility in Nuremberg. The first batteries that being produced weigh 55 lbs and have a volume of just under 0.5 cu. ft. When the Mercedes S400 BlueHybrid launches in mid-2009 wi