Auckland Mayor Len Brown has opted for a less fuel efficient official car, just weeks after launching a new strategy to cut the city's greenhouse gas emissions, it has been reported.
A new Holden Commodore has been delivered to Mr Brown for use as the official mayoral car -- his third Holden in seven years, with a carbon footprint more than 70 per cent bigger than some of the alternatives, Radio New Zealand reported.
The Holden Calais V-Series V6 has a carbon footprint 50 per cent bigger than a Skoda Superb and 73 per cent bigger than a Toyota Hybrid Camry, the broadcaster said, and comes just over a month after Mr Brown launched the Low Carbon Auckland Action Plan, which aims to reduce the city's greenhouse gas emissions by 40 per cent by 2040.
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Part of the plan encourages the use of more fuel-efficient vehicles.
Mr Brown told Radio New Zealand it was the only suitable option for his needs.
"I would like to get myself into an electric car, but it's the mayoral car so I tend to have a number of councillors or community members with me at any one time," he said.
The mayor's office said that despite a thorough investigation, no other vehicle was found to better fit the purpose of carrying up to five adults with space to also work.
"I hope people are accepting of the fact that a black Holden is probably mid-range and good in the circumstances for the mayor of Auckland to get himself around from one place to another," Mr Brown said.
In May 2005, former Auckland City mayor Dick Hubbard replaced the mayoral gas-guzzler with a hybrid electric Toyota Prius.
At the time he said: "We are going to have to be mindful of air quality problems and it's hugely important that we put emphasis on vehicles that are highly efficient when it comes to emissions and emission control."