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What are the Greenest Cities When it Comes to Cars?

West Coast Markets Dominate the Green Index

Going green is all the rage, so it's not surprising that searches for hybrid vehicles on are at an all-time high. In fact, a recent survey showed that 59% of car shoppers have purchased or would consider purchasing a hybrid as their next car.

So which cities are the greenest when it comes to car shopping? According to the Green Index, a ranking of hybrid vehicle searches by market, West Coast shoppers show the greatest interest in going green. San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Sacramento and San Diego make up the top five. In each of these markets, hybrids account for more than 3 percent of new car searches on While West Coast cities seem to embrace hybrid vehicles more than their counterparts in the Midwest and on the East Coast, cities in the South lag behind most major cities in the country, with Houston, Oklahoma City, Memphis, Birmingham and Miami rounding out the bottom five.

"Gas prices definitely play a role in hybrid interest, because West Coast cities traditionally have higher gas prices on average than the rest of the country," said editor in chief Patrick Olsen. "The Green Index also shows that interest is high in markets that are traditionally concerned with environmental issues, such as Denver and Minneapolis, and those plagued by traffic and congestion, such as Washington, D.C., and Boston." Green Index:
The Green Index monitors hybrid vehicle interest in the 50 largest markets in the country. Rankings are calculated based on the number of hybrid searches in a market as a percentage of all new-car searches in the market.

Market Percentage of Hybrid Searches
1)San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose5.622
2) Portland, Ore.4.784
3) Seattle 3.979
4) Sacramento, Calif. 3.973
5) San Diego3.912
6) Los Angeles3.504
7) Denver3.394
8) Washington, D.C.3.225
9) Minneapolis/St. Paul3.188
10) Boston3.174
11) Phoenix3.163
12) Charlotte, N.C3.135
13) Raleigh/Durham, N.C.3.098
14) Harrisburg, Pa.2.811
15) Indianapolis2.792
16) Hartford, Conn.2.783
17) Salt Lake City2.712
18) Louisville, Ky.2.669
19) Las Vegas2.625
20) Albuquerque/Santa Fe, N.M. 2.613
21) Kansas City, Mo.2.610
22) Chicago2.600
23) GreensboroWinston-Salem, N.C.2.460
24) Nashville, Tenn.2.427
25) Columbus, Ohio2.389
26) Philadelphia2.384
27) West Palm Beach, Fla. 2.349
28) Detroit2.317
29) Greenville, SC2.308
30) Milwaukee2.307
31) Buffalo, N.Y.2.307
32) Tampa/St. Petersburg, Fla.2.302
33) Grand Rapids, Mich.2.286
34) St. Louis2.266
35) San Antonio, Texas2.249
36) New York City2.220
37) Orlando, Fla. 2.207
38) Cincinnati2.202
39) Pittsburgh2.148
40) Cleveland2.148
41) Baltimore2.089
42) Norfolk, Va.2.081
43) Jacksonville , Fla.2.000
44) Atlanta1.995
45) Dallas/Fort Worth1.960
46) Houston1.937
47) Oklahoma City1.913
48) Memphis, Tenn.1.851
49) Birmingham, Ala.1.844
50) Miami/Fort Lauderdale1.829

*Survey conducted for by Impulse Research Corp. The survey was conducted online with a random sample of 1,033 men and women 18+ who own cars.

About is the leading destination for online car shoppers, offering credible, easy-to-understand information from consumers and experts to help buyers formulate opinions on what to buy, where to buy and how much to pay for a car. With comprehensive pricing information, side-by-side comparison tools, photo galleries, videos, unbiased editorial content and a large selection of new- and used-car inventory, puts millions of car buyers in control of their shopping process with the information they need to make confident buying decisions.

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