It's a great way to travel green, and a great way to test drive a new fuel-efficient 'green' car that you just might want to buy when your current Old Breakdown needs to be replaced.
There are more than 2,500 gas-electric hybrids in the Avis and Budget fleets, with more models and additional rental locations being added. Models include --
- Toyota Prius, the model which made hybrids cool to drive, in the compact class
- Nissan Altima, which has licensed Toyota's hybrid technology, a full-size sedan
- Ford Escape, a compact-size SUV, being added by the end of 2007
Avis and Budget also rent "flex fuel" cars, which run on E-85, mixture of gas (85%) and ethanol (15%). E-85 ethanol fuel is sold at gas stations primarily in the Midwestern U.S. One of the beauties of E-85 is that flex-fuel cars also can run on 'normal' unleaded gas, without the ethanol mix. E-85 models in the two fleets include three Chevrolet models -- Chevy Suburban, Chevy Impala, Chevy Monte Carlo.
Avis and Budget also are introducing airport shuttle busses with the newest "ulta-clean diesel" technology, in Los Angeles and San Diego. Clean diesels kick out less sulfur thanks to more advanced engine and exhaust-control technology, produces fewer emissions than standard diesel fuel and engines -- a whopping 95% less.
Hybrids, flex-fuel, ultra-clean diesel. Yes, the roads are getting greener.