After culling the field to five finalists that also included the Honda Insight
, Mercury Milan Hybrid
, Toyota Prius
and Volkswagen Golf
TDI, Green Car Journal named the Audi A3
TDI as its 2010 Green Car of the Year at the 2009 Los Angeles Auto Show. This marked the second consecutive year that a clean diesel vehicle has rolled off with that honor, following the VW Jetta TDI's win in 2009. In announcing the award at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal and editor of GreenCar.com, lauded the Audi A3 TDI for being a truly complete package. "This compact luxury car
features an impressive EPA estimated 42 mpg on the highway -- a 50 percent highway fuel efficiency improvement over the standard gasoline engine A3. Plus, this Audi's quiet, clean diesel engine delivers loads of low-end torque and a fun-to-drive experience, all with the functionality of a 5-passenger hatchback
." Audi of America's president Johan de Nysschen, who was on hand to accept the accolade, characterized the A3 TDI as "a ready-now solution to our society's toughest transportation issues." Presented annually since 2005, the Green Car of the Year is chosen by a panel that consists of six environmental and automotive experts along with GCJ editors. This year's invited jurors included Dr. Alan Lloyd, president of the International Council on Clean Transportation; Carl Pope, executive director of the Sierra Club; Jean-Michel Cousteau, president of Ocean Futures Society; Matt Petersen, president of Global Green USA; automotive expert and TV host Jay Leno; and automotive icon Carroll Shelby.