Best low emissions green cars 2016

Toyota Prius plug-in 2013 front action
Credits: Otis Clay
9 Feb, 2016 9:00am Sam Naylor

Fuel economy and low emissions are increasingly important for car buyers - here are the best green cars to buy

Don't panic - we've not gone mad, and this isn't a list of the best cars with green paint. This is a list of cars which are kind to the environment - economical, fuel efficient, and most importantly with low CO2 emissions.

Consumers continue to love these green cars as they often turn out to be very cheap to run. This is thanks to high fuel economy and low emissions, which qualify for reduced or even free road tax. Those with an ecological standpoint will be happy to know that these also make green cars kinder to the environment - at least once the polluting manufacturing stage is over.

Car makers are always innovating with petrol and diesel engines, and breaking new ground with electric and hybrid tech, so there are now many different types of car that can be called green. Whether you're looking for a big SUV or a tiny runabout, there's bound to be a green car out there for you.

Some firms focus mainly on one powertrain type - like Toyota, which is known for its hybrid technology or Nissan with its LEAF electric car. But whatever they do, the goal is always the same: make cars that are efficient but still attractive to buyers.

Choosing the best green car for you

The best green car for you depends on a number of factors. You'll need to work out how much you want to spend, plus what sort of driving you'll be doing. For long-distance travel, an electric car might be out of the question - it currently takes too long to charge them back up and would be a pain to do so at a service station.

However if you're using the car for commuting only then an electric car could be perfect, as you could charge it at home and then again at work. A hybrid aims to combine the best aspects of an electric car and a conventional one, but it's compromised in both areas.

Here we've listed our favourite cars that can claim to be green - note that these are not necessarily the most efficient cars out there, but rather the ones we think are the best to buy right now.

Tell us what you think of our green car picks in the comments section below...    

Best green cars: top 10

  1. 1. BMW i3
  2. 2. Volkswagen Golf Bluemotion
  3. 3. SEAT Leon Ecomotove
  4. 4. Vauxhall Ampera
  5. 5. MINI Cooper D
  6. 6. Toyota Prius Plug-in
  7. 7. BMW 116d  EfficientDynamics
  8. 8. Ford Fiesta ECOnetic
  9. 9. Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
  10. 10. Volkswagen Polo Bluemotion