With Honda UK poised to launch its new Civic IMA to bust London Congestion Charging, the Rolling Stones are set to carry the company's eco message on the other side of the Atlantic.
This week the Rolling Stones performed a free concert – the band's first free concert since 1968 – at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The band aims to raise awareness about global warming and to raise funds for Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), one of America's leading environmental advocacy groups.
The benefit show was conceived as a way to put "a worldwide spotlight on global warming and the opportunities and consumer products that exist right now to start fixing the problem," said Jon Coifman, spokesman for NRDC.
The event began with a ‘green’-carpet arrival of celebrities, who were transported to the concert by a fleet of 20 petrol-electric Civic IMAs, as well other hybrid vehicles on sale in the U.S. NRDC approached Honda for assistance in transporting VIP concert guests as a way to increase awareness of cars on sale today with advanced environmental technologies, like the Honda Insight and Honda Civic IMA, that offer significant improvements in fuel economy and extremely low levels of emissions.
Expected celebrity riders in Civic IMAs included Cameron Diaz and Leonardo DiCaprio, co-chairs of the fundraising gala, Pierce Brosnan, Steve Martin, Drew Barrymore, Sharon Stone, Sheryl Crow, and Lenny Kravitz, among others.
The concert kicked off with a special appearance by former President William J. Clinton.
Honda fuel cell car gets the President’s attention
Also this week, the hydrogen-powered Honda FCX fuel cell car joined the White House’s ceremony on the Freedom Fuel Initiative in Washington D.C. American Honda executives were expected to brief President Bush and Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham on the vehicle.
"Hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles hold great promise for future clean air vehicles, while at the same time reducing our global dependence on oil," said Tom Elliott, executive vice president, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "At Honda, we believe it is our responsibility to advance our technology towards a cleaner environment, and the fact that the Honda FCX is actually on the road today is a giant step in that direction."
Honda plans to lease about 30 fuel cell cars in California and Japan during the next two to three years. The company currently has no plans, however, for mass-market sales of fuel cell vehicles or sales to individuals.
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