A Small Car for a Mayor Who Seeks a Bigger Job

Former Lincoln Navigator driver switches to Toyota Prius and is now planning to encourage aldermen and New Haven city fleet to move to hybrids

Published: 03-Jan-2005

New Haven - In his 11 years as mayor of this liberal city, John DeStefano Jr. has made environmental issues a priority. He altered school buses to reduce air pollutants and added bicycle lanes. He promised to buy energy from renewable sources. And he fought the reopening of a power plant that neighbors argued would sully the air.

Yet, he was often criticized for arriving at news conferences and meetings that heralded these initiatives in a big black Lincoln Navigator that the city bought at his request years earlier. The car got 11 miles to the gallon, said Mr. DeStefano, 49, who is seeking the 2006 Democratic nomination for governor.

"It was just the wrong thing to be driving," he said.


Playing catch-up a decade late, the world's auto giants now find that they have to lease or buy technology from Toyota.

Spc. Jeffrey Hamme and Staff Sgt. Michelangelo Merksamer of HHC, 1/506th Infantry, point out features of the Hybrid Electric Humvee at the AUSA Annual Meeting earlier this month. The two Soldiers participated in a Military Utility Assessment of the prototype vehicle last month at Fort Campbell, Ky.

Ford's 'Hybrid Patrol,' a 10-city initiative this fall that aims to show hybrid drivers how to drive for best fuel economy. EV World photo of Bill and Lisa Hammond on way to first Ford Patrol event in Detroit during stop-over in Omaha.


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