For the second year in a row, the Green Car of the Year award has been handed to a clean diesel vehicle. This time around, it's the 2010 Audi A3 TDI and its 2.0-liter direct-injected turbo-diesel engine that's beaten its way to the top of a field populated mostly with gas-electric hybrids from Toyota, Mercury, and Honda.
Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of the Green Car Journal, which sponsors the award, cites the A3's EPA-estimated 42 highway mpg, five-seater hatchback functionality, and fun driving experience seasoned with healthy portions of low-end torque as the reasons for its success.
The Green Car of the Year is awarded annually at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Previous winners of the award include the Volkswagen Jetta TDI, the Chevy Tahoe Hybrid, the Toyota Camry Hybrid, and the Mercury Mariner Hybrid.