Updated at 2:15 pm on 2/26/09
I've always had a problem with the idea of "green SUVs." You don't absolve an SUV of its sins by making it slightly more fuel-efficient. I remember an invitation to a festival of green films proclaiming proudly that the celebrity guests would be ferried around in huge Lexus RX400h hybrids. Couldn't they just ride in Priuses, like some of our less-demanding Oscar attendees?
It's not surprising, then, that Hollywood, California is the location of a five-month-old business called Green SUV, which has already become "the preferred go-to car service among Hollywood's A-listers." Meryl Streep and Penelope Cruz were invited to take the service's SUVs to the Academy Awards, and stars were motored to the Golden Globes, too. (According to a source with green car service Econation, Streep was actually ferried to the Oscars in a 2010 Prius, though our source told us they were asked not to speak to the media).
C'mon, aren't the kids riding in separate vehicles with the nannies? Do they really need to rent huge Cadillac Escalades and GMC Yukons (both hybrids, but it doesn't help much) and Porsche Cayennes? Maybe the bottled water (another environmental insult) and "healthy" snacks enticed them, or the DVD players and 200 channels of DirecTV satellite entertainment so they can watch themselves on screen. All the cars are WiFi-enabled, the better to field the latest multi-million-dollar offer.
For the record, the Cadillac Escalade Hybrid gets a dismal 20 mpg in the city, and only 21 on the highway. The Tahoe is only slightly better, at 21/22. And the Porsche Cayenne is a horrific 14 in the city and 20 on the highway. You wouldn't do a whole lot worse in a Hummer H3.
Green SUV CEO Damien Breen says, "I felt it was time for a luxury car service to take part in eliminating gas-guzzling, high-emission vehicles from the roads. We realize many people want to contribute to the environment, but can't see themselves being driven around town in a Prius."
Why the hell not? A Prius was good enough for Larry David's character (Larry David) in Curb Your Enthusiasm, for Brian the dog in Family Guy, and for Mary Louise Parker (and drug dealers!) in Weeds (funny video here). "It's about the environment," Breen says. Yes, it is. And as far as the environment is concerned, small is beautiful.
Photo: The Cadillac Escalade Hybrid: 21 mpg on the highway.
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