People are becoming more environmentally conscious as media raises awareness about the criticality of the situation. The world is seeing significant changes in climate, an increasing number of wildlife species are at the verge of going extinct and even human life is threatened. One of the biggest reasons behind this is high levels of toxicity in the air around us.
Cars and vehicles of all sorts have contributed significantly to decreasing air quality. However, with awareness, there is an increase in the demand for safer alternatives. While some people are switching to bicycles for eco-friendly commuting, technological advancements are allowing cars to be environmentally friendly as well.
What are eco-friendly cars?
Eco-friendly cars are also referred to as “Green Cars”. As most of us already know anything that is eco-friendly means that it is not harmful to the environment and ecosystem around us. It does not, in any way possible, hurt air quality, animals, plants, humans, and does not utilize any non-renewable resources.
Cars have mechanical motors that are fueled by petroleum, diesel and gas. A normal, non-green car works by burning this fuel to power the engine that allows a car to perform its function. Consequently, the internal combustion of fuel leads to the emission of harmful gases in the environment, and over-consumption of fuels as well. Cars that are considered to be “green” or safe for the environment:
- Produce lesser or no amount of harmful gases for the environment
- They run on alternative fuels that do not cause fuel combustion
Alternative fuels for these cars can include:
- Rechargeable batteries
- Compressed air
- Clean diesel
- Fuel cell
There are more than one just type of eco-friendly cars. You will be surprised to see various types of green cars that are available in the market today. However, note that to consider a car “Green”, some institutes and international standards like ACEEE also keep check of other factors such as how the car is manufactured, how manufacturing disposal is done, energy source, emissions, recycling and much more. The ACEEE announces an annual list of cars that are “green”.
These cars are more technologically advanced and therefore also might cost more than the regular ones. The following benefits of eco-friendly cars might even convince you to make an investment too:
- Lesser pollution: if you are an environmentally conscious person, who chooses their beauty products based on the “cruelty free” label or prefer buying recyclable things, then green cars are the way to go. They reduce emission of harmful gases in the environment significantly, and also lessen the demand of more oil.
- Less oil, more energy independence. With oil being a highly expensive, and a luxurious import for most countries, switching to alternative energy resources might help reduce imports for us.
- While cars themselves are an expensive but a one-time investment, they surely provide lesser fuel costs. You can expect your fuel costs to be half of what you spend right now.
- Increasing popularity, decreasing rates. Green cars, whether plug-in hybrid or an electric, are becoming increasingly popular. Big companies and brands around the world are manufacturing and supplying these cars on a mass level. Resultantly, there is a drop in their prices, and the drop will be more in the near future.
The best eco-friendly cars
You must have heard or seen Kia on your AT&T DIRECTV service, social media ads or have heard about it from someone. The company is a south-Korea based manufacturer of automobiles, with Hyundai as the parent company. It has been around since a long time, but it is only recently that Kia up its game and successfully increase its sales and popularity in the international market.
Kia’s Niro Hybrid 2018 was a huge hit with its compact SUV design that had a detailed interior and the 2020 model is back with a bang. It is a plug-in hybrid that will give you the best of the advance tech these days. Its all-electric-range has a mileage of about 26 miles.
The car is available in a range of 7 beautiful colors that give off a luxurious vibe. You get to make many changes including seat trimming. It has a very digitalized interior with its 7-inch LCD screen that gives digital driver information. This Plug-in hybrid has a cargo space of about 54.5 cubic feet. All these incredible features of this “green car” come with a 10-year warranty.
Featuring a 47-mile all-electric-range and a 110 MPG gas-electric rating, the Honda Clarity Plug-in hybrid is the perfect package for those who want to go green. It is available in a variety of 5 bold colors, with a streamlined designed that has an aerodynamic structure. The LED lights on the exterior have an automatic on and off system, making it energy efficient too. It claims to have incorporated eco-conscious materials in its interior, making it the ideal pick for environmentally conscious individuals.
The interior is lined with high tech display of digital information regarding the car, as well driving safety tips. It is a smart, 8-inch display that lets you connect your own audio for entertainment as well.
Toyota’s Camry was initially a non-hybrid, regular car, which has now evolved into an eco friendlier car. The Toyota Camry Hybrid sedan has a very similar look and feel to Honda’s Clarity Plug-in. It is available in a range of colors, including 7 solids and 3 two-tone colors. It is known for providing a mileage of 18 miles per gallon, which is more than the Camry Hybrid SE and XLE models.
Some people find this car to be slightly more compact with room inside compared to similar models such as the Toyota Accord and Honda Clarity. Some of the LE’s key features include smart-touch key system, 4-mode switch capability, which include the EV mode, ECO, Normal and Sport. It has advanced automatic on and off system in the headlights, 7-inch touch screen display and a backup camera too!
Verdict – the winner
You don’t need to give up your automobile to be environmentally conscious. Just simply switch to an eco-friendly car to keep up with your principles and your responsibility to the nature. While all the three above mentioned cars are phenomenal in their own way, the winner seems to be the Kia Niro Hybrid 2020. The model is equipped with the latest plug-in hybrid tech, it is spacious, and has an impressive exterior too.