Australia's Holden, a unit from General Motors, has announced a new badge for all vehicles that it equips with some sort of alternative fuel
or gas-saving technology: ecoline. Holden faces a bit of an uphill climb when it comes to environmentally-friendly technology, as the marque is best known for its large, rear-wheel drive, V8-powered coupes, sedans and utes. This new ecoline badge is meant to soften that image somewhat. Unfortunately, the ecoline badge won't mean much until 2012 or so when hybrids
are expected to be offered by Holden in Australia. Until then, the most fuel efficient
models that will get the badge will be equipped with V8 engines, though they will get Active Fuel Management, which cuts the number of cylinders that fire when maximum power isn't needed. This type of technology is effective and has been available in the U.S. from GM for a while, but it doesn't seem like quite enough to earn a special badge. Perhaps that should have waited for the hybrids and diesels.