(All photos: Clifford Atiyeh/Boston.com)
As part of a national marketing effort for its new Prius, Toyota yesterday planted five solar-powered charging stations in front of the Prudential mall. The solar panels are mounted on pedals of giant metal daisies up to 18 feet tall, and the generated electricity runs through a molded plastic green bench with 110-volt outlets and free wireless Internet.
With June's heavy rain and thick clouds continuing into July, Toyota's stunt is a bit ill-timed to advertise the company's optional solar roof panels on its Prius, which are supposed to power the air conditioner when the car is parked on a hot day. MBTA riders can feel the cool at five solar-powered bus shelters, which feature integrated fans, at City Hall Plaza, the Aquarium, Boylston and Clarendon Street, the Mass. Ave Orange Line station, and Huntington Avenue and Ruggles Street.
Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi and cool breeze will burn out July 19, when Bostonians can again remind themselves of increasing MBTA fares and brick-hard bus seats.
Check back for a review of the 2010 Prius and a special hybrid comparison test coming soon right here.
The author is solely responsible for the content.
About Boston Overdrive
|Clifford Atiyeh is an automotive writer and car enthusiast . He has spent his entire life driving cars he doesn't own.
In the garage: 1995 21-speed Iron Horse, 2002 Jeep Wrangler X (by association)
|Bill Griffith is a veteran Boston Globe reporter, having reviewed cars for more than 10 years and serving as assistant sports editor for 25 years. He was also the paper's sports media columnist.
In the garage: 2006 Subaru Baja
|John Paul is public affairs manager for AAA Southern New England, a certified mechanic, and a Globe columnist. He hosts a weekly radio show on WROL.
In the garage: Hyundai Sante Fe, Chrysler PT Cruiser convertible
|Craig Fitzgerald has been writing about cars, motorcycles, and the automotive industry since 1999. He is the former editor of Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car.
In the garage: 1968 Buick Riviera, 1996 Buick Roadmaster, 1974 Honda CB450
|Keith Griffin is president of the New England Motor Press Association and edits the used car section on About.com. He also writes for the Hartford Business Journal and various weekly newspapers in Connecticut.
In the garage: Mazda 5, Dodge Neon
|George Kennedy is a senior writer for WheelsTV in Acton, which produces video reviews for Yahoo, MSN, and other auto websites.
In the garage: Lifted 1999 Jeep Cherokee