Exclusive Content
Original Shows, Motorsports and Live Events
Due to the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation, our website is currently unavailable to visitors from most European countries. We apologize for this inconvenience and encourage you to visit www.motortrend.com for the latest on new cars, car reviews and news, concept cars and auto show coverage, awards and much more.MOTORTREND.COM

The Desert Goes Green: The Los Angeles auto show

Greg R. Whale
Dec 31, 2007
Photographers: The Manufacturers
The Los Angeles auto show focused heavily on "green" vehicles, with hybrids popping up all over, nary a conference that didn't include the term "carbon footprint," and even Porsche talking about fuel economy.
It was a pair of truck announcements at the show that brought the real greens out, though. During one, an environmentalist-group participant posed as the head of an auto company so he could bully his way into a press conference and question Toyota leadership about its decidedly nonhybrid debut of the Toyota's Sequoia. It all went off unsuccessfully. Another environmentalist cried foul when the full-size SUV Chevy Tahoe won the Green Car of the Year award, calling the award and comparison of a Tahoe Hybrid's fuel economy (21/22) to that of a Toyota Camry four-cylinder (21/31) "ludicrous." Here are a few other highlights:
General Motors
The General filled a stage with hybrid versions of the Tahoe, Silverado, and an Equinox fuel-cell vehicle, (one of 100)--10 percent of which will go to Disney for some semi-public exposure. Expect the Tahoe's 6.0-liter/two-mode hybrid system to be used throughout the 900 platform (for more, see our "Newcomer" on the Silverado 2-Mode Hybrid in this issue). Off-stage, an Escalade Hybrid also was prominently displayed.
Photo 2/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids chevy Fuel Cell
Photo 3/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids chevy 2 Mode

Audi's 50-state Q7 diesel will be here in early 2009 as a 2010 model, with an estimated 230 horsepower and 375 pound-feet of torque and fuel economy 15 percent better than a gas V-6.
But taking center stage was the largest "up!" car yet: the space up!. It uses a lithium-ion battery, fuel cell, and roof-mounted solar cell. In a nod to VW van history--or old Defenders--it comes with skylights along the roof sides.
Photo 4/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids volkswagen Up
Photo 5/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids volkswagen Up

Photo 6/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids dodge Durango
Chrysler Corp.
Not to be outdone, Chrysler showed off its two-mode hybrids, the odd-sounding Hemi Hybrid Durango and Aspen. With the 345-horsepower MDS Hemi and 87-horse electric motor, the system is estimated at 385 horsepower and able to tow 6000 pounds (matching the 4WD Tahoe--all Aspen/Durango Hybrids are 4WD for now), these add a trailer sway control component to the electronic stability control. Also, Jeep expanded the Grand Cherokee models available with a diesel to include a Laredo and the option tab's been lowered by $1000 on the Limited and Overland.
Photo 7/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids dodge Durango
Photo 8/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids dodge 2 Mode Transmission

Porsche has taken a cue from the 911 and put some power in the back of the Cayenne: many of the hybrid workings. As with most hybrids, expect the major portion of the fuel-economy gain to come in the city. When queried on the biggest challenge with preserving and incorporating Porsche dynamics into a (heavy) hybrid, a spokesman replied in perfect deadpan "the battery."
Photo 9/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids porsche
Photo 10/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids porsche

Photo 11/11   |   2007 Los Angeles Auto Show Hyrids mitsubishi
All Outlanders receive some minor updates and an aluminum roof for 2008. The Outlander ES will run the 168-horse, 2.4-liter and CVT at a base price of $20,640, while the V-6 will go in the LS ($23,160) and XLS models. Mitsu looks to split sales evenly between fours and sixes.