No matching results

Recent Articles

Popular Makes

Body Types

10 Best Eco Friendly Cars

Jeff Zurschmeide
by Jeff Zurschmeide
May 21, 2013
5 min. Reading Time
2019 Audi e tron charging infrastructure ・  Photo by Audi

2019 Audi e tron charging infrastructure ・ Photo by Audi

When eco-friendly cars started to appear on the market, going green meant compromising everything else you might need in a vehicle. Eco-conscious buyers were limited to small cars with underpowered engines. Thankfully, that’s no longer the case. The selection of less-polluting cars grows every year, and virtually every class of vehicle now offers some kind of alternative fuel options. You can even buy hybrid exotic supercars!

If you’re among the hundreds of thousands of drivers looking to make a change to greener driving habits, here are 10 vehicles for you to consider. These vehicles range from subcompact cars to full-size pickup trucks, with luxury and performance options as well.

2019 Chevrolet Bolt

The 2019 Chevrolet Bolt will give you an average 238 miles of travel on a full charge. That’s more than any other non-Tesla vehicle on the market, and the Bolt has a much more affordable price point. The 2019 Bolt carries a net price less than $30,000 after the $7,500 Federal tax credit.

The Bolt does not compromise on performance. The electric motor produces 200 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. The Bolt will accelerate from 0-60 in just 6.5 seconds. The Bolt accepts standard 120V Level 1 and 240V Level 2 charging. If you buy the option, the Bolt can also accept DC Fast Charging, which adds 90 miles of range in just 30 minutes.

 Photo by General Motors

Photo by General Motors

2018 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron

Audi’s new 2018 A3 Sportback e-tron combines a turbocharged 1.4-liter engine with an electric motor capable of delivering 102 additional horsepower immediately. The e-tron delivers 204 total combined horsepower, and 258 pound-feet of torque. That power is routed through a 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with front-wheel-drive. The A3 e-tron will accelerate from 0-60 in 7.6 seconds.

Starting at $40,745 before Federal tax credits, the Audi e-tron also features heated front seats, a panoramic sunroof, keyless activation, and Audi’s pre sense safety systems. Higher trim levels include Audi’s MMI navigation, LED headlights, adaptive cruise control, and a Bang & Olufsen stereo. The e-tron’s four-door wagon design offers the cargo capacity and functionality of an SUV with the precise handling you expect from an Audi.

 Photo by Audi

Photo by Audi

2018 Cadillac CT6 Plug-In

The 2018 Cadillac CT6 PLUG-IN combines luxury, performance and a plug-in hybrid drivetrain. The gasoline engine is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. In addition to the gas engine, Cadillac provides an electric motor capable of driving the CT6 for 31 miles – enough to cover most daily commutes entirely on electric power at 62 MPGe. The combined V6 system also provides up to 335 horsepower and 432 pound-feet of torque, with a 0-60 time of 5.2 seconds. The 2018 Cadillac CT6 Plug-In starts at $74,090 after Cadillac’s cash incentives. The CT6 has available high-tech features including a camera-based rear view mirror, night vision display, automatic parking assist, and a head-up display.

 Photo by Cadillac

Photo by Cadillac

2019 Nissan Leaf

The successful 2019 Nissan LEAF electric vehicle was redesigned last year, adding over 40 miles of range and a long list of features. Nissan expanded the battery pack from 30 kWh to 40 kWh, and the new Leaf is rated for 150 miles of range on a full charge. The 2019 Leaf also offers 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, which is 37% more than the last generation. So while the Nissan is green, it’s also very quick.

A notable new feature in the Leaf is the ability to perform Level 2 charging without a dedicated charging station. The Leaf offers a charging cable that will plug into a standard 120-volt outlet or a 30-amp 240-volt outlet – the kind that most houses have for the clothes dryer. The 2019 Nissan Leaf starts at $29,990.


2019 Ram 1500 eTorque

It might seem odd to have a full size pickup truck in a list of eco-friendly vehicles, but the 2019 RAM 1500 eTorque is the only truck on the market right now featuring electrification. The Ram 1500 uses a mild hybrid system with an electric motor and generator that sits on top of a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 or 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine.

The electric motor helps drive the engine using a heavy-duty belt, adding up to 130 pound-feet of torque at low RPM. When you’re decelerating, the system works in reverse, using the truck’s momentum to recharge the hybrid battery. The Ram’s hybrid system improves both city and highway fuel economy by about 2 MPG with the V8 engine. The 2019 Ram 1500 eTorque starts at $33,490.

 Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

Photo by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

2018 BMW i3

The 2018 BMW i3 comes as an EV with 114 miles of range, or with the optional range extender engine you can expect 97 miles of all-electric range, followed by 83 miles of gasoline-generated additional range, or 180 miles of range on a full charge and a full tank. However, BMW says that the 2019 model will improve those numbers by about 25%, so more range is on the way.

The i3 delivers impressive acceleration from 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, and its interior seems like a high-tech sitting room. DC Fast charging at public stations is supported, along with conventional Level 1 and Level 2 charging at home. The 2018 BMW i3 starts at $44,450.

 Photo by BMW

Photo by BMW

2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid

The 2018 Honda Clarity is available as a plug-in hybrid, an EV, or a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, if you live in an area that supports hydrogen. The plug-in hybrid offers 47 miles of all-electric operation, and up to 340 miles of total range using the gasoline engine.

The Clarity PHEV gasoline engine is a 1.5-liter four-cylinder, rated at 103 horsepower, augmented by an electric motor that provides 181 horsepower and 232 pound-feet of torque. The Clarity uses a continuously variable transmission to drive the front wheels. The Clarity is rated at 110 MPG equivalent when driving on electric power, and 44 MPG city, 40 MPG highway when the gas engine is running. The Clarity PHEV starts at $34,295.

 Photo by Honda

Photo by Honda

2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

SUV buyers who want to go green should consider the 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. The RAV4 Hybrid engine is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, paired with Toyota’s long-proven Hybrid Synergy electric motor system and a continuously variable transmission. The RAV4 also features all-wheel-drive, and returns 34 MPG in the city, and 31 on the highway.

Toyota also fills up the RAV4 with safety equipment. If you upgrade to the Limited trim, you’ll enjoy features including traction and stability controls, a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sonar, blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, backup camera and auto high beams. The 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid starts at $28,430.

 Photo by Toyota

Photo by Toyota

2019 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid

If you want a larger SUV, consider the 2019 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid. This mid-size SUV starts with a 3.0-liter V6 engine and a conventional hybrid electric motor to drive the front wheels. Then the rear wheels are driven by a pair of electric motors, giving you all-wheel-drive without a driveshaft connecting the front and rear wheels. The combination of three electric motors and the gasoline engine is rated at 321 horsepower and 289 pound-feet of torque.

Inside, the MDX Sport Hybrid is all Acura precision and elegance. You get three rows of seating for 6 or 7 passengers, plus Acura’s renowned luxury interior and technology. The 2019 Acura MDX Sport Hybrid starts at $45,295.

 Photo by Acura

Photo by Acura

2019 Volvo XC60 Hybrid

The 2019 Volvo XC60 T8 plug-in hybrid uses a turbocharged and supercharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine together with an electric motor to drive the front wheels, and another electric motor that drives the rear wheels. The XC90 T8 returns 26 MPG city and 28 MPG highway when using the gasoline engine, and up to 60MPGe in electric mode.

The XC60 hybrid delivers an impressive 400 horsepower and 472 pound-feet of torque in a full-time AWD configuration. The result is that the XC60 T8 will accelerate from 0-60 in 4.9 seconds, besting many high-powered sports cars. This Volvo will also travel up to 17 miles on electric power alone. In the base Momentum trim, the 2018 XC60 T8 starts at $54,695.



 Photo by Volvo

Photo by Volvo


Interested in Getting a New Car?

Used Cars Near You

No Data Available

Powered by Usedcars.com
©2024 AutoWeb, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Some content provided by and under copyright by Autodata, Inc. dba Chrome Data. © 1986-2024.