Dr. Jekyll Meets Mister Hybrid in Detroit

For every earth-hugging citizen like the Mercedes-Benz S300 Bluetec Hybrid or Toyota A-BAT hybrid truck on display at NAIAS 2008, there was a hard-drinking V-8 pickup or a sinister sports car out to murder your m.p.g.

Published: 20-Jan-2008

ANY environmentalist, faced with the blaring soundtracks and flashy unveilings during the press previews of the North American International Auto Show, could be forgiven for thinking he had stepped into a bizarre stage production called “Jekyll and Hyde: The Motown Musical.”

For every earth-hugging citizen like the Mercedes-Benz S300 Bluetec Hybrid or Toyota A-BAT hybrid truck, there was a hard-drinking V-8 pickup or a sinister sports car out to murder your m.p.g. Those dueling automotive natures were much in evidence at this year’s show, which opened to the public Saturday and runs through Jan. 27.

Ford and Dodge pulled the plus-size wrappers off their respective F-150 and Ram pickups. Designed to compete against the equally big boys from General Motors, Toyota and Nissan, the trucks will also battle a sales climate that has turned chilly for thirsty trucks and S.U.V.’s.

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