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Hybrids Go Mainstream
By Michael V.Copeland

(Business 2.0) – Though they've clearly been a hit with coastal early adopters, hybrid cars have yet to seep deeply into the consciousness of Middle America. But that's likely to change this month when both Honda and Toyota unveil the first major ad campaigns highlighting hybrid vehicles, each pushing the same message: The gas-sipping technology isn't just for tree huggers. Toyota is launching its ads ahead of an increase in production of non-Prius hybrids, including a new Camry set to launch next spring. Analysts think the automaker will eventually offer hybrid engines in its entire Lexus line. Honda, meanwhile, is trying to play catch-up: Its campaign takes aim at market leader Toyota by touting a more efficient engine in its revamped Civic hybrid.  --Michael V.Copeland