Greenwashing (a portmanteau of "green" and "whitewash") is the deceptive use of green PR or green marketing in order to promote a misleading perception that a company's policies or products are environmentally friendly. The term green sheen has similarly been used to describe organizations that attempt to show that they are adopting practices beneficial to the environment.I came across this Escalade Hybrid at a local Publix (in handicap parking no less) and nearly dropped my groceries in surprise. The non-hybrid version of the Escalade, in real world driving, gets between 9mpg city driving to 17mpg on the highway (with a strong tailwind downhill). The hybrid version, if you believe the PR, gets between 20mpg city and 23mpg highway. The cost of the Escalade Hybrid? A mere $74,000 for the base model.
I drive a "real" hybrid, a 2009 Prius. A vehicle 1/3rd the cost and 1/2 the weight of the Escalade Hybrid, a true hybrid that gets at least 50mpg, and on many occasions, 55 to 60mpg.
Why do I call the Prius "real" and "true"? Because the Prius was designed from the beginning, from the wheels up, to be a hybrid vehicle. Not a bastardization like the Escalade Hybrid that's had it's hybrid bits bolted on after the fact. The extra bits and the hybrid badge are there so that SUV-loving drivers can feel less guilty about driving such a beast. It's still a gas and resource hog of the first order, it's just got a new green sheen so it and its owner won't look so ugly.