The Environ-mental Options
Every month we get more and more requests for ‘Green’ cars… no, not the paint colour, but the environmentally friendly type.
Without wanting to sound too Clarkson-esque: Environmentally friendly cars are either rubbish*, too expensive** or actually not that environmentally friendly after all***.
But not for much longer.
LOTS MORE HYBRIDS
Within 12 months every manufacturer and their Gran will have at least one hybrid car in their range… even Ferrari are planning one!
And Toyota have adapted the system used in the Prius so that it will fit in any model, which will mean a hybrid version of every car in their range.
ELECTRIC CARS THAT WORK
The UK’s first mainstream electric-only car will be launched next February (I say ‘first’ because the 2003 G-Wiz doesn’t count as a ‘car’ in my book… just a travesty). The Nissan Leaf will cost £22,000 (after the government’s proposed £5k contribution) but just think of how little it will cost to run.
Boris Johnson has promised 7,500 new electric car charging points in London too, which will go a long way to supporting this.
USED PRIUS PRICES TO PLUMMET
And if, despite my personal opinions, you still want a used Toyota Prius, hold off for a few more months as I suspect used prices are going to crash, especially in London.
Why? It is quite probable that the rules for free entry into the Congestion Charge Zone will soon change. The current rules say that any hybrid can enter for free. The new rules will say that only cars that emit less than 100 g/km of CO2 will gain free entry. Up to late 2009, the Prius produced 104 g/km of CO2…
This will mean that all those Hybrids bought because they allow free entry into London will be quickly sold, and replaced with newer versions, or more likely, sub-100 g/km CO2 eco-diesels (such as the Volkswagen Golf BlueMotion and Ford Focus ecoNETIC). The flood of used Priuses (the 1.5-litre version) coupled with a hugely reduced demand should send prices crashing.
And what about the future beyond the next 12 months? Petrol is running out and only cars thatcompletely remove the need for petrol can be considered to be the future.
Hydrogen fuel cells may be the next step, but there is always something new and exciting around the next roundabout.
Say “Hi!-brid” to everyone from me…
(Founder & Owner)