Buying an environmentally friendly vehicle used to mean choosing from slim pickings, with only a few strange-looking sedans on offer. Today, though, car makers are coming out with newer and better green technology every year.
More demand from consumers, along with tough emissions regulations, are fueling a revolution in car-making that is seeing some of the most inventive developments in a long time. From hybrids, to biofuels, to better fuel efficiency, the cars on sale today offer a lot of variety to consumers. And we’re not just talking about sedans anymore. Green SUVs and even luxury eco cars have been making their way into dealerships and on the road, with consumers lining up to buy these new and impressive options.
Read on to find out which new SUVs are the most environmentally friendly of them all.
The Battery-Powered Mitsubishi Outlander
This impressive plug-in hybrid boasts a 32.5-mile electric range, and uses three drive modes: the EV drive mode, the series hybrid mode, and the parallel hybrid mode. The EV mode uses only the battery, the series mode charges the battery with the help of the gas engine, and the parallel mode uses both the battery and gas engine simultaneously.
For the moment, the Outlander is only available in Europe and Japan, but it should be hitting North American markets by the spring of 2016. It’s already been getting positive reviews for its comfort and performance, and is bound to be a big hit.
Toyota RAV4 EV Pairs with Tesla
Two generations of the Toyota RAV4 EV were sold – though mostly in California. The first, originally launched as early as 1997, received good reviews and even developed a cult following. The second includes an impressive Tesla-engineered powertrain that boosts performance and gives the crossover 103 miles of driving between charges.
Charging also only takes 5-6 hours, making this crossover one of the best electric options currently on the road.
Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel
For North American buyers looking for something a little more available than the Mitsubishi Outlander and the Toyota RAV4 EV, there’s the award-winning Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel.
This year, the 2015 Green SUV of the Year award went to the Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel. It secured the coveted award for its impressive fuel economy rating of 21 mpg city and 28 mpg highway, which has both consumers and professionals with careers in auto repair impressed and enthused.
Tesla Model X: Master of EV Technology
Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the highly anticipated debut of the Tesla Model X, set to finally release later this year – most likely in September. This crossover is set to have safety ratings similar to the Model S, but will be able to seat seven and comes with all-wheel drive. It’s also supposed to come with snazzy “flacon wing” doors.
On the performance side of things, the Model X will be able to go from 0 to 60 in less than five seconds, and should be able to travel about 170 to 230 miles in between charges.