By Denna Bowman
The price tag for ‘green’ cars is being kept higher by the use of new technologies and tyres, which may be putting buyers off, according to consumer analysts.
The latest low rolling resistance tyres, hybrid technology and major efficiency changes to shape all come at extra cost.
Consumers have the best intentions, nearly half (42%) of drivers said their next car will have lower CO2 emission than their current one, according to the poll by Auto Trader and over half (51%) said they’d consider buying a greener car.
However, 85% of the 2,000 respondents cited price as the most important deciding factor when it comes to buying a new car and that doesn’t always sit comfortably with the most environmentally-friendly cars on the market.
Adam Vaughan concluded in his Ethical Living Blog at the Guardian.co.uk that: ‘That chimes with my own recent experience of buying a car.’
‘I wanted the greenest I could afford, but that turned out to be a diesel Ford Focus that spits out 127g/CO2 every kilometre compared to the 104g/CO2 km the Prius emits.
‘Although there’s a healthy second-hand market for the Prius, to get one with a fairly low mileage – say, 20,000 miles from three years of driving – will cost you at least £7,500. And that’s probably just a little too much for most people buying a family car.
‘Pretty much any family-sized vehicle that falls into the lowest two CO2 tax bands comes with an upfront price premium because it will either feature hybrid technology or major efficiency changes to body shape and tyres, such as on Ford’s £16,845 ECOnetic Focus.
‘Most people, like me, will end up buying a car that emits more than 120g/CO2 km, which will also cost them £85 a year more in road tax (vehicle excise duty).