Car Batteries, Diesel Golfs, Prius Crashes: What's the Link?

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VW GOLF TDI_7

VW GOLF TDI_7

Like many site editors, we read our traffic stats religiously. Perhaps unlike other site editors, ours frequently make us laugh.

We try to provide practical information on navigating your way through the confusing claims made about 'green' cars, whether they're hybrids, clean diesels, or just very fuel efficient gasoline vehicles.

Yet the answer to the headline question above is: Stories on those topics--along with the new 2012 Ford Escape and a scientific look at why miles-per-gallon is a bad way to measure fuel efficiency--made up our five most popular posts during the first half of 2010.

With no further ado, as they say, here are our winners for January to June 2010.

2010 Volkswagen Golf TDI

2010 Volkswagen Golf TDI

# 5: Will the 2010 Volkswagen Golf TDI Be Diesel's Biggest Winner? This one's an all-time favorite, and it's more than a year old now. We love our VW diesel fanboys, we do. Bottom Line: The reviews of the 2010 VW Golf TDI have been good, and it has a base price of just $21,990. We've always thought that Volkswagen's 2010 Golf TDI would sell well, and last year, sales figures for Volkswagen TDI vehicles backed us up.

2005 Toyota Prius

2005 Toyota Prius

# 4: The Punching Bag Hits Back: Prius Crash Was Driver Error, Toyota Says. Well, it sure was topical. The Toyota recall had to be the big automotive story early this year. And this was the first time that Toyota caught a break, which a lot of readers apparently wanted to see. Bottom Line: Though the driver claimed her 2005 Toyota Prius hybrid accelerated out of control across a busy road and into a stone wall despite her frantic attempts to brake, the car's black-box data showed that the accelerator was floored--and the brake pedal wasn't touched.

ford kuga individual 001

ford kuga individual 001

# 3: Here It Is: New 2012 Ford Escape, But Will There Be a Hybrid?  The Ford Escape compact crossover continues to sell well, and was one of the winners from the Cash-for-Clunkers program last summer. But obviously readers want to know what's going to replace the long-in-the-tooth truck. Badly. Bottom Line: In line with Ford's program to offer the same models in markets all across the globe, the next Escape will most likely be the European Kuga crossover. Whether Ford calls it Kuga (especially after it killed Mercury) or keeps the Escape name is a question. Another: Will there be a hybrid version, since Europe has no Kuga Hybrid? We're betting yes.

gas pump

gas pump

# 2: Miles Per Gallon Is Just Stupid. No, Really, It Is. Our oldest most-popular story, dating all the way back to March 2009, this one gained a brand-new life on the Slashdot. We take that as high praise, since its audience of techies is notoriously tough on substandard content or arguments they deem insufficiently robust and scientific. Bottom Line: Because Miles Per Gallon (MPG) is not a linear scale (as gallons/mile would be), lots of Americans don't understand that improving gas mileage from 10 to 20 mpg saves waaaaaaay more gas than upping it from 40 to 50 mpg. We'll walk you through the math. Read the piece, and you'll see.

And our singular most popular piece for the first six months of the year is ... (drum roll, please) ...

car batteries are highly recyclable - AAA

car batteries are highly recyclable - AAA

# 1: Who Knew? A Car Battery Is the World's Most Recycled Product. Wow. What a barn-burner. This story just kept on giving, becoming the most popular piece we've published in the history of GreenCarReports. Our thanks to the tens of thousands of people who clicked on our a story originated by Scientific American. Bottom Line: After receiving years of propaganda from the battery makers' trade group, we figured everyone knew by now that virtually every lead-acid car battery gets recycled. Boy, were we wrong.

 
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