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10 electric and hybrid cars to improve your carbon footprint

The Toyota Prius is a car that has been called the most environmentally friendly car in the world, and it was the first mass-produced hybrid on the market. But did you know there are other hybrids? And don’t forget about electric cars, because they are also trending.

The internal combustion engine is an astounding 87% of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions. If we could get all of this energy and power from renewable sources, the planet wouldn’t warm by as much as it does today. Cars and other forms of transportation are the largest contributor to this pollution, but electric cars, hybrid cars, and even some hybrids that plug in to charge, are helping to change this dynamic.

As the government continues its green industrial revolution, including a ban on new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 and a target of zero carbon emissions by 2050, electric cars will soon be our future. What’s more, the government is currently subsidising the purchase of an electric car up to £3,000 through Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) grants, so there’s no better time to buy an electric car.

Although electric vehicles are still relatively new to the market and 80% of car sales are still petrol or diesel vehicles, EV production has already made great progress and will only improve as more people switch to EVs. Hybrid cars are also another choice for people who aren’t yet ready to take the plunge. They combine an internal combustion engine with electric batteries.

With that in mind, here we look at the best electric and hybrid cars on the market in terms of price, environmental impact and life expectancy.

1. Tesla Model 3

credit : Bram Van Oost/Unsplash

From £40,990

With their striking design and Elon Musk’s eccentric presence on Twitter, Tesla’s are probably the most recognizable electric vehicles on the market. But it’s not just about the flashy design and outspoken owner. The standard Tesla Model 3 takes you from 0 to 60 mph in just over five seconds, while the Model 3 Performance takes just three seconds. There are also a number of high-tech options, including automatic lane changing, advanced autopilot and autonomous driving capabilities.

The disadvantage is the high price. At £40,990 for the standard Model 3, it’s the second most expensive car on the list and one of the cheapest models, the Model S, will cost you at least £83,980. But while Tesla seems overpriced today, it won’t be forever. The company has announced that it is working on an affordable Model 3 hatchback, but unfortunately there is no official price or release date yet.

For more information, see https://www.tesla.com/en_gb/model3.

2. Fiat 500

credit : Martin Cutler/Unsplash

From £25,495 (hatchback) and £30,495 (convertible).

The easily recognizable Fiat 500 is known for its elegant design and compact dimensions. Redesigned as an electric car for environmentally conscious people, it is offered with either a 15-mile range battery or a 42 kWh battery with a 199-mile range, putting it on par with the competition. The Fiat 500 can be charged in public places or at home. If you decide to purchase a wallbox charging station, the car can be charged in less than 4 hours.

The Fiat 500 is equipped with an optional charging station for charging at home. Plus, you can charge your car remotely via Bluetooth, 4G and Wi-Fi. Its compact size makes it easy to drive and move around town. However, the disadvantage is also the size. Like its motorized cousins, the three-door 500 electric car has limited rear seat and trunk space.

For more information, see https://www.fiat.co.uk/500-electric.

3. Nissan Leaf

credit : Ed Harvey/Unsplash

From £25,995.

The Nissan Leaf, one of the first popular electric vehicles, has become one of the best-selling vehicles since its introduction and remains an excellent choice for electric car buyers. The standard Nissan Leaf can travel about 168 miles between charges, while the Leaf e+ can travel 239 miles between charges. The quick charge time from 20 to 80 percent is 60 minutes for the Leaf and 90 minutes for the Leaf e+, thanks to the larger battery.

Charging a Leaf at home costs around £5.76, or 3p per mile compared to petrol, which costs around 12p per mile. In addition, off-peak charging is cheaper – overnight charging costs around £4. The Leaf comes standard with satellite navigation, smartphone mirror and digital driver display, as well as four different driving modes. As a five-door model, the Nissan Leaf is more comfortable for rear passengers than the Fiat 500 or Mini, allowing it to carry more people.

For more information, see https://www.nissan.co.uk/.

4. Volkswagen ID.3

credit : Martin Cutler/Unsplash

From £32,300

The Volkswagen ID.3, with its simple and classic design, is usually referred to as the electric version of the Golf. The five-door ID.3 has a rounded, compact and sleek look, combining the space that more compact cars lack without looking huge and bulky.

What sets the ID.3 apart from its competitors is the choice of battery size. With a choice of small, medium and large batteries, customers can tailor the vehicle to their needs. The ID.3 accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.3 seconds and reaches a top speed of 100 km/h, leaving VW far behind its rivals in terms of speed and acceleration. One of the strongest points of ID.3 is its range. With a range of up to 336 miles on a fully charged battery, depending on size and driving conditions, this is a solid, versatile choice for an electric car.

For more information, see https://www.volkswagen.co.uk/.

5. Renault Zoe

Loading of the Renault Zoe. Credit: Tom Radecki/Unsplash

From £27,595.

The Renault Zoe is another reliable mid-range electric car. The vehicle has a good range. The Zoe Electric’s 52 kWh battery provides up to 245 miles of range without recharging, making it suitable for both commuting and long trips. With a public charger, the Zoe can cover 75 miles in an hour, or 90 miles in 30 minutes with a 50kW DC fast charger. The vehicle is covered by a 5 year (or 100,000 mile) warranty.

The Zoe is an excellent and more affordable option, but like the Fiat 500 and many other three-door cars, it doesn’t offer much room in the back seat. It’s fine for schoolwork, but three adults would have a hard time sitting in the back.

For more information, see https://www.renault.co.uk/electric-vehicles/zoe.html.

6. Mini electrician

credit : Martin Cutler/Unsplash

From £26,000

The most striking aspect of the Mini Electric, or any Mini for that matter, is its design. With its classic, elegant design, the Minis has become one of the most recognizable cars on the road since its reintroduction in 2001. The electric Mini comes standard with a satellite navigation system, which can guide the driver to a charging station when the battery is low. With a 7 kW wall charger, you can charge a Mini Electric battery from empty to full in just under five hours. But as with the Renault Zoe, it takes just 28 minutes to go from 10 to 80 per cent charge if you find a 50kW fast charger outside.

Inside, the Mini has a 6.5-inch digital display instead of a traditional clock and four seats, making it one of the smallest cars on the list.  The battery can go 140-145 miles between charges, which is the biggest drawback of the electric Mini, and the car is best suited for city use, not long-distance driving.

For more information, see https://www.mini.co.uk/en_GB/home.html.

7. KIA Soul

credit : George Bakos/Unsplash

From £33,795

The latest version of KIA’s Soul is a significant improvement over the original model in both styling and performance. The biggest advantage of the current KIA Soul is its improved range. Equipped with an advanced 64 kWh lithium-ion battery, the new KIA Soul can travel 280 miles on a single charge, with a range of about 150 miles.

The Soul can also accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.6 seconds and has features like intelligent cruise control and lane departure warning for a better driving experience. In terms of styling, the KIA is a large and spacious five-door SUV that is suitable for families. Reviewers note that despite its size, the Soul is easy to drive. This makes the car a solid choice and shows KIA’s commitment to improving its electric vehicles.

For more information, see https://www.kia.com/uk/.

8. Toyota Prius Active

credit : Jessica Fertny/Unsplash

From £24,880

The Prius has definitively established itself as the most popular gasoline-electric car in history. As a hybrid, the Prius uses both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor, making it an intermediate between gasoline/diesel and electric cars.

The Prius has five doors, accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just over 13 seconds and has low CO2 emissions. Toyota says the Prius’ battery will last 100,000 to 150,000 miles, or 8 to 10 years. Equipped with a 1.8 hybrid petrol engine, automatic gearbox and front-wheel drive, the Prius is a solid car, so it’s no wonder it enjoys some popularity. The only downside is that as a hybrid, the Prius doesn’t qualify for government EV incentives.

For more information, see https://www.toyota.co.uk/.

9. BMW iX3

credit : The Blowup/Unsplash

From £55,850

For the latest version of BMW’s electric car, developers have focused on a cosmetic update to the vehicle. Unlike its predecessor, the i3, which had an unusual and awkward appearance, the new iX3 looks almost exactly like the petrol versions. The iX3 combines the benefits of an electric vehicle with the looks of a regular gasoline-powered BMW SUV. It’s for anyone who wants an electric car without looking like an electric car.

With a range of 279 miles on a charge and a speed of 0-62 mph in 6.8 seconds, the iX3 is a reliable and practical choice for drivers. The vehicle is equipped with a spacious interior and an integrated driving and parking assistance system (including steering and lane control, cruise control and speed limiter). BMW also offers comfort and sport programs for all driving conditions. In the sports version, the sound and tone are similar to that of a petrol engine.

For more information, see https://www.bmw.co.uk/en/index.html.

10. Porsche Taycan 4S

credit : Justus Menke/Unsplash

From 83,580 pounds

The Porsche Taycan 4S breaks the myth that electric cars are practical and is a top-of-the-range electric car. The Taycan, like the Tesla, is a luxury car for environmentally conscious people. With an impressive range of 254 miles, depending on driving conditions, the Porsche battery is suitable for long trips.

The Taycan is a mix of super sports car and practical car. It has four-wheel drive and a low centre of gravity. Although the Taycan is much heavier than its petrol-powered counterparts due to the weight of the battery – a larger battery is needed for a long range – the weight is concentrated on the ground to keep the car agile. Equipped with safety technologies such as Lane Departure Warning and Emergency Braking, and an eight-year battery warranty. For charging, Porsche provides an RFID card or app that allows users to access the network of Porsche charging stations.

The biggest drawback of the Porsche Taycan is – unsurprisingly – its price. If the Taycan is in your price range, it’s a good option, but also consider that the Tesla has similar features for a lower price.

For more information, see https://www.porsche.com/uk/.{“@context”:”https://schema.org”,”@type”:”FAQPage”,”mainEntity”:[{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”Are hybrids or electric cars better for the environment?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” Hybrids are better for the environment because they use less fuel and emit fewer greenhouse gases.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”Do hybrid cars leave a carbon footprint?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” Hybrid cars do not have a carbon footprint because they use electricity to power the engine.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”Do electric cars increase carbon footprint?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:” Electric cars do not increase carbon footprint.”}}]}

Frequently Asked Questions

Are hybrids or electric cars better for the environment?

Hybrids are better for the environment because they use less fuel and emit fewer greenhouse gases.

Do hybrid cars leave a carbon footprint?

Hybrid cars do not have a carbon footprint because they use electricity to power the engine.

Do electric cars increase carbon footprint?

Electric cars do not increase carbon footprint.

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