New Chevrolets Get Ecological Label
Chevrolet says it will start putting new informational labels on its vehicles to help consumers understand the vehicle's ecological impact. But is it just a marketing gimmick?
Starting in March with the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic, each new model will have a small label on the rear driver-side window. More Chevrolets will get the label starting with the 2013 model year.
The label helps explain the ecological benefits of choosing a Chevy over competing vehicles, or possibly a used car. Facts on the Sonic's label include that it was produced in the U.S. — thus reducing emissions related to transportation — and that the car is 85% recyclable. An independent third-party sustainability agency verifies the information on the labels.
We don't know of any other manufacturers with labels like this, which actually puts Chevrolet's facts into a bit of a vacuum. How will consumers know if other vehicles don't offer the same green benefits? For instance, a car is one of the most recyclable items on the planet, with about 75% to 80% being reused on average. That makes the Sonic's recyclable figure, while still better, seem less impressive.
If other automakers started printing labels like this and there were more comparative analysis and context, we could see how the labels could benefit car shoppers.