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10/25/03-11/05/03 * LESS WACKY AND MORE GREEN

This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Sun, Oct 26, 2003

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

10/28 LESS WACKY AND MORE GREEN

By Contributing Editors CHRISTOPHER MERLO and CHUCK DAPOZ Photos by JAMES KUBIK and CHUCK DAPOZ 2003 Tokyo Motor Show - Part 4 Non-Japanese brands

HYUNDAI NEOS-II

Hyundai NEOS-II South Korean manufacturer Hyundai premiered this effort from its Japan Design Center. The NEOS II is a crossover utility vehicle features a large glass roof - another recurring theme at this year's show. MERCEDES-BENZ F 500 MIND (Reviewed in the introduction under Most-Notable Vehicles) JEEP TREO

Jeep Treo We found ourselves referring to this as the Lone Ranger of the show: the only new vehicle - concept or production - introduced by a North American brand. Yes, Daimler-Chrysler is German owned, but Jeep is pure American. The Jeep Treo takes urban trekking to new dimensions in terms of package, styling and propulsion. The Treo name was inspired by its 2+1 seating arrangement and tear shape - narrowing from front to rear. Distinctive Jeep cues abound in order to compensate for its toylike appearance. These include the trademark grille, prominent (big eyed) headlights and thoughtful touches such as the "boot tread" profile along the bottom edge of the running boards. We also liked the twin, high-mounted spar wings with taillamps. Finally, this "lite" SUV goes easy on the environment thanks to an alternative power system - the package accommodates either a fuel cell or hybrid electric powertrain.

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