Japanese Environmental Enthusiasts Complete 4,200-Mile Trip in Toyota PriusJuly 20, 1999 by Jeff Shepard
Toyota Motor Sales USA (Torrance, CA) announced that a group of Japanese environmental enthusiasts arrived in New York City aboard the historic Staten Island Ferry in mid-July, having successfully completed a 4,200-mile, cross-continent trip in the world's first mass produced hybrid-electric car, the Toyota Prius. Their arrival marked the first time that a hybrid car has crossed the US. Team ACP, accompanied by a Japanese TV crew, began their trek in Torrance, California, on June 4, 1999, and traveled across the southern tier of the US until they reached New Orleans, then zig-zagged through Kentucky and Washington, DC, up to Toronto, Canada, and circled Lake Ontario before turning south to traverse New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Along the way, they visited environmental groups and observed ecology projects from coast to coast. The effort, called Eco-Mission '99, was led by Paris-to-Dakar rally driver Kiichiro Yokota.