The Eco Cars

As Detroit stalls, Japan drives in with appealing new hybrid models

It was a scene that could have served as a heartwarming advertisement for clean-air consciousness. A nervous young customer picks up her new car: a sleek, 65-mile-per-gallon, ultra-low-emission Honda Insight. As she glides away from the dealership, a throng of onlookers gathers to wish her well and applaud her noble intentions.

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