Schwarzenegger then turned serious, highlighting the important role the newest alternate-fuel and hybrid vehicles play in reducing greenhouse-gas emissions.“It is fantastic to see that the world’s automakers are developing the technology to help us meet our goals in California. These cars come in every size and shape, and they prove that we can give consumers the choices they want and still protect the environment,” he said.Chevy’s Hybrid Tahoe uses a two-mode hybrid system that merges the automatic transmission with the hybrid technologies. Larger vehicles get lower gas milage because they weigh more, so something was needed to boost it.“An equalizer has been needed, and the two-mode system in the Tahoe is clearly that equalizer,” Cogan said.The Tahoe beat out hybrid versions of the Chevrolet Malibu, Mazda Tribute, Nissan Altima and Saturn Aura.email@example.comWant local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre While that might not sound impressive, this SUV puts out fewer tailpipe emissions than its gasoline-powered counterpart.“We’re thrilled to receive this recognition,” Chevrolet General Manager Ed Pepper said in a statement. “We’ve felt that the Tahoe Hybrid represents the best of both worlds – great utility you’d expect from a Tahoe with fuel economy on par with today’s mid-size cars.”Voters included editors at the magazine, talk-show host Jay Leno and car designer Carroll Shelby. Environmental groups also participated.Chevrolet got its green trophy 30 minutes before Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger stepped up to a microphone in front of the center’s South Hall and stole the spotlight from the gleaming cars.“I haven’t seen this much technology since I did my ‘Terminator’ movies,” the governor said while standing in front of a row of next-generation electric and fuel-efficient vehicles from foreign and domestic manufacturers. “I’ve changed a lot of technology on my cars, whether it is my Hummer or my other cars.” What do you call a full-size SUV that can seat eight people comfortably, can tow 6,200 pounds without straining and has 60 cubic feet of cargo space? Well if it’s the Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid, you call it the 2008 Green Car of the Year.Surprised it’s not a plug-in all-electric car? Don’t be.“We look for cars that will move the bar forward and be available for sale by January of the award year,” said Ron Cogan, editor of the Green Car Journal, as he announced the winner on Thursday at the Los Angeles Auto Show.The Hybrid Tahoe is powered by a 6.0-Vortec V-8 that provides 30 percent better fuel efficiency than a Tahoe powered by a standard V-8. Gas milage is estimated in the range of 14 city and 20 highway.