For the past 3 years, Green Car Journal has been looking over the most fuel efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles for the next model year and selecting one as the Green Car of the Year. As in previous years, the announcement was given at the Las Angeles Auto Show and this year's winner came as a surprise to quite a few people.
The winner was the 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI. Powering the Jetta is the 2.0 liter direct injected turbo diesel that returns somewhere in the realm of 41 mpg. Along with the ample fuel mileage, the turbo diesel also offers a performance edge thanks the plenty of low and high end torque and a well tuned VW suspension.
The criteria for the judging are more than just offering many miles per gallon, how clean the fuel burns and the amount of harmful emissions from the tailpipe as also taken into account. In both of these categories the TDI also did very well. The Jetta is also priced at just under $22,000, which makes it affordable to almost anyone.
Among the panel of judges were Jay Leno, Carroll Shelby and several VIP's from different organizations and associations. It was these minds that chose the Jetta over such vehicles at the Smart ForTwo, the new Ford Fusion Hybrid and the Saturn Vue 2.
CNET Car Tech