Detroit 2009: Five Most Significant Green Cars

The 2009 Detroit show may be remembered as the event where green cars officially went mainstream, launching a green battle royal. Just about every company, including each of the Detroit Three, had environmentally friendly vehicles on display. Here's our list of the five most significant:

2010 Toyota Prius

The first hybrid to achieve commercial success showed up with a redesigned, more efficient Hybrid Synergy Drive System, as well as a fresh face and interior. Toyota wisely left its now-iconic profile unchanged. Inside, the centrally positioned instrument panel is a bit higher tech, while the rest of the dash takes on even more of a science-fiction feel. It remains to be seen whether these evolutionary improvements, coupled with unmatched brand-equity, will be enough to fend off stiff new competition.

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