In a victory that carries clear political overtones, the Audi A3 TDI, a compact high-mileage diesel, was named Green Car of the Year during a ceremony at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
The German offering was up against four other hybrids and diesels in its bid for the increasingly coveted award. Jurors praised the Audi A3 not only for delivering high mileage and low-emissions but for its comfort, performance and features.
The award is clearly useful for Audi, which now has two so-called “Clean Diesels” in its line-up and which hopes to expand that line-up significantly, said Audi of America CEO Johan De Nysschen. Calling the award a “milestone,” the executive said the challenge Audi has faced is a “lack of awareness” of today’s diesels, which are vastly different from the slow, rough and smoke-belching oil burners” of decades past.