by Tim Tyler
The first wave of the Prius Plug-In MPG Challenge has been completed, and the winner is The Helping Hands Food Pantry.
While competing against some stiff competition from other non-profits, the Helping Hands group managed to achieve the highest overall MPG with an astounding 356 MPG over the 30-day period.
If you’re not familiar with the Prius Plug-In MPG Challenge, it is a new annual contest created by Toyota to raise environmental awareness and to help promote maximizing fuel efficiency of the Prius Plug-in.
Toyota, which has just seen sales of its Toyota Prius line surpass 3 million, has committed to $20,000 in prizes to organizations that end a 30-day driving period with the highest MPG while driving a borrowed Prius Plug-in from Toyota.
The Helping Hands Food Pantry is a “donation-run group established by a local councilman and minister in Teaneck, N.J., that provides free, supplemental groceries to needy residents.”
In order to qualify, contestants had to drive at least 500 miles in the 30-day period.
Helping Hands came in with 506 total miles driven and averaged 356 MPG. That is 261 MPG more than the vehicle’s official estimated average in EV Mode. To celebrate their accomplishment, Toyota is awarding The Helping Hand Food Pantry with a much-needed $2,500 contribution, which I’m sure they will put to good use.
The second wave of competitors has officially begun. This wave will consist of seven prolific environmental influencers from NY, NJ, and Connecticut. Just like the seven participants from the last round, the second wave of eco-conscious competitors will borrow a Prius Plug-In and see if they can achieve the greatest overall MPG in the next 30 days.
The second wave of ecologically conscious competitors participating as MPG Challengers includes:
- Earth Day New York, a nonprofit organization promoting environmental awareness and solutions through partnerships with schools, community organizations, businesses and government
- EcoKaren, a chiropractor-turned-green-living-consultant and blogger focused on the connection between the environment and health
- Green-4-U, a resource for people who want to know more about green living but do not know where to start
- Green Divas, a radio show and blog offering listeners information on green and sustainable living
- Green Living Guy, author and editor of the “Green Guru” series
- Inhabitat, a blog devoted to the future of design, tracking the innovations pushing architecture and home design towards a smarter and more sustainable future
- New York Green Advocate, a blog authored by environmental activist Paul McGinniss focused around the latest news about the world environment, sustainable living, renewable energy and green building
Notably, Eco Karen and the Green Divas have run sites in the Important Media network, while Green Living Guy is a friend and wonderful fan and supporter of CleanTechnica.
To bring some real-time information to the event, participants will be able to log activity via several social channels.
- Ecokaren In Prius Plug-In MPG Challenge for Autism Speaks (ecokaren.com)
- Toyota Prius Plug-In To Be Driven By ‘Eco-Savvy Influencers’ In MPG Challenge (greencarreports.com)
- Toyota Prius Sales Top 3 Million Mark (cleantechnica.com)
- Electric driving in the 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in (reviews.cnet.com)