Green cars

Published: Sunday 31 January 1993

CAR MANUFACTURERS in the US will begin offering "zero emission" vehicles by 1998. Overriding monopolistic concerns, the big three -- General Motors, Ford and Chrysler -- will cooperate closely in the development, design, testing and even possible manufacturing of the components of these electronic cars.

While electric cars are still uneconomic, the hybrids are on their way. Offering the best of both worlds, the hybrid cars made by Fiat, Peugeot-Citroen and Volvo will run on electricity in town and petrol or diesel on the highway. However, as a battery car, their speed and range will be limited.

Meanwhile, environmentalists are demanding higher petrol taxes to discourage the Americans' profligate fuel consumption, thereby reducing exhaust emissions.

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