Toyota had an ad in Belgium that included the words "Zero emissions low." While the Prius is a model with very low CO2 emissions, they're certainly not zero and the claim has been considered misleading. The advertisement did not contain any CO2 emission or fuel consumption data, as is obliged under Belgian law, and thus violated European labeling directive 1999/94/EC. Friends of the Earth Europe's car efficiency campaigner, Jeroen Verhoeven, filed the complaint. "Car manufacturers are using 'greenwash' advertising to confuse consumers whilst at the same time blocking EU proposals for a target of 120g CO2/km by 2012. If Toyota is serious about reaching 'zero emissions' anytime soon then why are they blocking a 2012 target?", he said in a statement sent to AutoblogGreen.

This is not the first time Toyota has been into trouble for exaggerating the "greenness" of its products. Lexus, too, has had its problems. But as the big marketing motto for automakers is being shifted from security to ecology, they all make mistakes. Could this lead to banning green advertisements for cars, like in Norway?

[Source: EUBusiness, h/t to Jeroen]

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