The hybrid fad is anything but a fad. Ever since Honda and Toyota introduced their respective gas-electric models several years ago, competing automakers have been playing catch up. Indeed, General Motors ? ravaged by financial woes and negative press coverage ? has been doing its best to jump into the fray nearly a full year after archrival Ford Motor Company introduced its first hybrid the Ford Escape. This summer the 2007 Saturn VUE Green Line goes on sale, an SUV that is priced just right. Please keep reading to learn what sets this new model apart from the rest.
Buying a hybrid vehicle can look like the right decision at first glance. Higher fuel mileage, lowered gas consumption, and a vehicle that is much more environmentally friendly are some of a hybrid's chief attributes. However, most hybrids have carried a hefty price premium compared to their gasoline powered brethren. Even with soon-to-expire government tax credits figured in, most hybrids cost thousands of dollars more than the average gas-powered vehicle.For 2007, the Saturn VUE Green Line edition will change all of that.Yes, if you are in the market for a hybrid SUV, you do have some choices.
The Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, and Ford Escape each offer hybrid models. For 2007, Saturn's SUV the VUE will have a hybrid model in the mix too.Here are some of the features that will set the VUE apart from the competition:.An Attractive Price ? With an MSRP of $22,995, the VUE Green Line will be priced at about $4000 less than the competition.
Although still several thousand dollars higher than the basic gasoline VUE, the retail price of Saturn's hybrid VUE is something to be reckoned with.Best Highway Mileage ? Unlike some hybrids that get better fuel mileage around town, the VUE Green Line will show a dramatic improvement in highway fuel economy: projected figures are 27 mpg city; 32 mpg highway. GM says that fuel mileage improvements will come through electric powered acceleration assist, early fuel cut off during deceleration, and engine cut-off while idling.The VUE Green Line will be powered by a 2.4L engine producing 170 horsepower. This compares to the base 2.
2L gasoline engine available with other VUEs that produce 143 horsepower.In addition, standard equipment upgrades for the VUE Green Line will include 16 inch alloy wheels, antilock brakes with traction control, bright side molding with rear spoiler, and more. Finally, OnStar will be included and the usual power convenience packages will also be options.
The Saturn VUE Green Line will be joined by the Saturn AURA Green Line in 2007. This Opel-derived sedan will debut in the fall as a gasoline model, months before the hybrid version is ready.Expect sales of both models to be strong as long as high gasoline prices remain in place as expected by some.
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By: Matthew Keegan