Sales of environmentally friendly cars, including plug-in hybrids, are expected to reach an annual high this year. And with ever-more growing numbers of manufacturers developing new eco-friendly offerings, consumers have never had it so good in terms of variety on offer.
Electric Vehicles are expected to surge from less than 0.8 per cent of global light-duty vehicle sales in 2015 to 35 per cent by 2040, according to a report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Here we take a look at 5 of the most appealing on the market today.
Winner of the Green Car of the Year 2015 courtesy of Auto Express, the BMW i3 is at the cutting edge of electric car technology and is currently recognised as the most fuel efficient EPA-certified vehicle. With its well-planned interior and futuristic styling, this all-electric city car offers a glimpse of the future of motoring.
The original BMW i3 delivered a range of between 80 and 100 miles, while the 94Ah version introduced in 2016 increased that even further to around 120 miles. For those looking for even more range, a range-extender version with a two-cylinder petrol engine will stop the batteries from running flat.
The BMW i3 generates zero emissions making it one of the greenest cars on the road today.
The Audi A3 e-tron combines a conventional 1.4-litre TFSI petrol engine with an electric motor to deliver impressive performance, exceptional efficiency and impressive range. Capable of covering up to 176.6mpg with CO2 emissions of just 37g/km, this award-winning hatchback delivers environmentally friendly driving without loss of performance.
Able to achieved 80 mph on pure electric power, the car is happy to coast, too. This innovative feature means that, if you find yourself inching the speedometer a little too much and take your foot off the accelerator, the car won't immediately apply the regenerative brakes.
UK Car of the Year judges were so impressed by the Ford Mondeo that, within two months of launch, they voted it Britain’s Best Family Car. Combining a specially-developed 2.0-litre petrol engine with an electric motor and battery for a combined mpg of 67.3, the Mondeo Hybrid is able to reach 100.9mpg for urban driving while emitting just 99g/km of CO2. Ideal for those looking for a greener motoring experience.
This eco-friendly Mondeo offers the best of both worlds: the enhanced efficiency and reduced emissions of electric power, with an additional benefit of a very quiet cabin. Standard equipment is generous too and includes sport seats, automatic headlights, sat-nav and traffic sign recognition.
The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has the honour of being the world’s first plug-in hybrid SUV. Originally introduced in 2014, it has gone on to become one of the most popular low emission cars on the road. With a high-tech powertrain and headline economy figures of 148mpg and 44g/km of CO2, it’s made a big impact on the UK car market, particularly with business drivers as it qualifies for a lower rate of company car tax.
Smooth and silent with light power steering the award-winning PHEV also incurs no road tax and for those living in London, no congestion charge either.
The Golf BlueMotion offers fuel economy of 88.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 85g/km. For lovers of the Golf, the BlueMotion delivers Volkswagen engineering and quality while also maintaining excellent on-road performance. Standard features include alloy wheels, sports suspension and stop/start technology.
All the usual Golf attributes of space, quality, reliability and safety are visible in the BlueMotion, while benefitting from being one of the slowest-depreciating Golfs.
For those looking to pay no road tax, or London-based congestion charge, this is the perfect choice.