Americans Finally Shifting Gears?

Two out of three Americans now consider buying a fuel-efficient vehicle a patriotic act, according to a study backed by the Civil Society Institute.

Published: 20-Mar-2005

 SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- The cultural chasm separating owners of beefy American-made cars and their tree-hugging, hybrid-powered counterparts may be narrowing.

And in a trend that's reminiscent of Detroit's disastrous market-share losses of the 1980s, Japanese automakers are the ones capitalizing on a change in consumer attitude. But even in the eyes of the most red-blooded of Americans, that might not be a bad thing.

With U.S. gasoline at record highs and dependence on foreign oil a steady problem, some of the staunchest defenders of the Republic are less likely to regard the idea of rumbling around in muscular gas-guzzlers as an act of patriotism.


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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