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Sierra Club Applauds Introduction of Mercury Mariner Hybrid SUV


July 11 , 2005

WASHINGTON, DC: Today, the Sierra Club applauds the launch of Ford’s new hybrid -- the Mercury Mariner Hybrid SUV. This vehicle shows that Ford has the technology to make all of its vehicles go farther on a gallon of gas. The Sierra Club looks forward to helping Ford make the hybrid Mariner a success, and encourages Ford to put this gas-saving technology to work in all of their vehicles.

“For years, the Sierra Club has pressured Ford to make more fuel-efficient cars and trucks,” said Dan Becker, Washington Director of the Sierra Club’s Global Warming Program. “They are now beginning to do that, and we want to help them succeed.”

The new Mercury Mariner Hybrid SUV’s electric motor allows its 133-horsepower gas engine to automatically shut down in stop-and-go traffic. As a result, it gets better mileage in the city (33 miles per gallon) than on the highway (29 mpg). Additionally, the Mariner includes regenerative braking -- applying the brake generates electricity that recharges the motor. The new Mariner Hybrid is American-made and built by union workers. It will appear in showrooms this fall, but will go on sale online starting today.

“Ford is committed to improving fuel economy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions across its range of vehicles. As the second of five hybrids announced by Ford, the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid represents the next stage of this commitment.”said Mary Ann Wright, director, Ford Sustainable Mobility Technologies and Hybrid Programs.

The Sierra Club will be working with Ford to get the news about the Mariner Hybrid out to its members and other environmentally-conscious Americans. Sierra Club will introduce it to 300,000 activists through the Sierra Club’s “Insider” newsletter (, and 3,000 Sierra Club leaders from across the United States and Canada will be given the first opportunity to test drive it and other hybrids at the Sierra Summit in September ( Sierra Club and Ford’s Mercury brand will also work together to educate consumers about how to get the best mileage from their hybrids.

Hybrid vehicles have comparable power, comfort and reliability to conventional vehicles - and can go 75 percent farther on a gallon of gas. The demand for hybrid vehicles already on the market has outpaced early predictions. The Sierra Club expects that the demand for Mercury Mariner hybrid will be strong, and quickly exceed the initial production run.

“We hope that helping to make the Mercury Mariner Hybrid a success will encourage Ford to invest in better technology to increase the fuel economy of its entire fleet,” continued Becker.

Making our cars, trucks, and SUVs go farther on a gallon of gas is the biggest single step we can take to curb global warming, cut America’s oil dependence, and save consumers money at the gas pump. The technology exists today to make all vehicles average 40 miles per gallon within ten years. Taking this step will save more oil than the United States currently imports from the entire Persian Gulf or could ever take out of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, combined.

“It’s not every day that the Sierra Club is able to applaud Ford’s actions,” continued Becker. “We are pleased with the Mercury Mariner hybrid, and it shows how America’s automakers can make cleaner, better vehicles here in the U.S. with union labor.”


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