The Little Car that Environmentalists Love to Hate

by Julie Walsh on February 4, 2008

Car A gets a fuel efficiency of 46 miles per gallon. Car B gets about 50 miles per gallon. Car A is called the Toyota Prius and is hailed by environmentalists as a step towards solving global warming. Car B, a new car called the Tata Nano unveiled by an Indian company, is reviled by environmentalists as disastrous for global warming. The New York Times devotes an entire editorial condemning the Tata Nano. Columnist and author Tom Friedman calls for the Tata Nano to be "taxed like crazy." The reason for this extreme criticism? The Tata Nano is cheap – very cheap. It is a revolutionary new car design that will cost only about $2,500 and will bring car ownership within reach of millions of new people in the developing world.

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