Green Technologies Highlighted in Washington Auto Show

The 2007 D.C. show opens with over 700 new cars, trucks minivans and SUVs on display from more than 42 automakers

The 2007 Washington Auto Show opens today to the media with over 700 new cars, trucks minivans and SUVs on display from more than 42 automakers.

The theme for this year's event – "Presenting Advanced Technologies" – mirrors the recent Detroit Show in many ways as alternative fuel technologies from diesel to hybrid and hydrogen will make their way to automaker display booths in our nation's capital.

The Washington Automotive Press Association will open Tuesday's events with a breakfast and award ceremony, which will pay tribute to NHTSA Administrator Nicole Nason with the group's John Lynker Award. Every year, the press association recognizes a member of the automotive community who has contributed in some great measure to the safety of drivers.

DaimlerChrysler Chairman Dieter Zetsche will provide keynote remarks at the breakfast, where he will focus on the latest environmental and technological advances, as well as ongoing challenges and opportunities in the global auto industry. His address entitled, "Engine of Economic Activity Can Burn Clean and Efficient," will also likely hit on Mercedes-Benz' new BLUETEC clean burn diesel technology.

The Embassy of Germany will follow-up on Zetsche's presentation with a series of workshops in the afternoon that will focus on the "Engines for the Future." Among other things, the discussion will include a description of the current technologies available on the market and which one, or combination of technologies show the most promise for the future.

German Ambassador Klaus Scharioth will provide welcoming remarks for the afternoon session, followed by a keynote address by Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL) and Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC) who will talk about what lawmakers on Capitol Hill are focusing on in regards to fuel efficient technologies.

A series of panel discussions including, German and U.S. auto industry reps, government officials, and members of German Parliament are set to discuss these issues and more following the Congressmen's address. And, a special announcement from the U.S. Department of Energy will fit somewhere in between it all.

International Media Day culminates with The Washington Auto Show Congressional Gala from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., gathering elected officials, industry VIPs and local civic leaders for the benefit of area health and children's charities.

The 2007 Washington Auto Show officially opens to the public on Wednesday and will run through Sunday, January 28.