Drive the Clintonmobile

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Former President Bill Clinton is riding green, thanks to Ford Motor Company. The automaker announced today that it has crafted a hybrid SUV fit for presidential service. In addition to getting 32 miles to the gallon, the Mercury Mariner Hybrid “Presidential Edition” is designed to be an executive's office on wheels and boasts a Secret Service-approved security system.

The hybrid’s creation was Clinton’s idea, and he approached Ford, the only American automaker with hybrids on the road. Ford obliged, eager to have a “tastemaker” behind the wheel, as one Ford executive described Clinton.

Could this be another sign of improved relations between Clinton and Al Gore, the former-vice-president-cum-enviro superstar? A Clinton spokesman dodged the question. “I know that as an Administration, they were both advocates of the environment,” said Ben Yarrow, deputy communications director at the Clinton Foundation. “It seems only natural that they would both continue to be.”