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Politicians trying to draw attention away from our dependency on foreign oil and car makers trying to draw attention away from their gas-guzzling products have one thing in common: they love to bandy about statistics showing how wonderful E85 can be, including how clean it is and how fuel efficient it can be.

Nissan, like the German automakers, initially was hesitant to develop hybrid vehicles. But seeing Toyota's and Honda’s success in the fast-growing segment, Japan’s second largest automaker tentatively took steps to the ‘green’ side by licensing parts from Toyota for the upcoming hybrid Altima which is to debut later this year.

Details are emerging about the upcoming auto-related challenge to be issued by the California-based X-Prize foundation. The organization’s new challenge will award a prize of $25 million to the first group that sells 10,000 vehicles capable of 250 mpg.