Top 10 environmentally friendly cars in South Africa

Car marketplace AutoTrader has compiled a list of the top 10 most environmentally friendly cars in South Africa, so those vehicles with minimal emissions.

The dangers of air pollution should never be discounted. According to a recent study published in the European Heart Journal, air pollution is now a greater health risk than cigarette smoking. According to that study, air pollution is killing 8.8 million people a year. In 2015, 7.2 million people died as a result of smoking, AutoTrader said.

But how can motorists make a difference to the massive problem of air pollution? By buying a ‘green’ car, said George Mienie, CEO of AutoTrader.

“Selecting a car with low CO2 emissions isn’t only good for the environment. It is also good for your back pocket,” said Mienie. This is because all new vehicles with CO2 emissions exceeding 120g/km in South Africa are subject to an Environmental Levy paid by car manufacturers, a cost which ultimately finds its way into pockets of consumers.

So, which vehicles do not exceed the 120 g/km? Unsurprisingly, electric vehicles feature prominently in the list. Bloomberg noted at Frankfurt’s 2019 car show that the message to environmentally conscious consumers from automakers is: we’re with you.

But a marketing blitz alone won’t wash away the deep uncertainties facing electric cars – obstacles little changed since carmakers’ initial forays with models like the Nissan Leaf and BMW AG i3. Customers don’t like paying up for new technology they’re unsure about, and they’re worried they won’t reliably get to where they want to go.

“The next big thing is not going to be about the cars, because they will come,” Carlos Tavares, president of the European Automobile Manufacturers Association and CEO of Groupe PSA, said at the show last week. “The next big thing is about affordable mobility. The next big thing is about how we make this work for the biggest number of people.”

Across Europe, sales of new plug-in hybrids and fully-electric cars last year made up 2% of total registrations. In South Africa, around 900 electric vehicles are currently registered in the country, however, this number is expected to grow as new models come into the country and as a better charging infrastructure is put into place.

These are 10 of the greenest cars in the land, according to AutoTrader:

BMW i3

This is an electric car – so there are no emissions.

Jaguar I-Pace

Like the i3, this is an electric car, meaning zero emissions.

Volkswagen Polo

The 70kW TSI BMT Trendline and 70kW TSI BMT Comfortline are the “greenest” in the range,

with emissions of a mere 103 g/km.

Toyota Prius

This hybrid emits just 87 g/km.

Volvo XC90

The pick of the range is the Volvo XC90 T8 Geartronic AWD, which has a petrol engine and an electric motor, and emits a low 49 g/km.

BMW i8

Like the Volvo, this sportscar emits a mere 49 g/km of CO2.

Lexus UX

There are lots of “green” vehicles in the Lexus range, but the UX 250H SE, which emits 103 g/km of CO2 is most certainly one of the funkiest.

Mercedes-Benz EQC

Mercedes-Benz will launch its all-new zero-emission EQC electric SUV in South Africa later this year.

Ford Fiesta

With emissions of a mere 84 g/km of CO2, the 1.5 TDCi Trend is the pick of the Fiesta range.

Nissan Micra

Irrespective of which model you pick, emissions of 115 g/km of CO2 apply.

Read: 10 eye-catching cars from the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show – including an electric VW Golf

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Top 10 environmentally friendly cars in South Africa