It’s no surprise at this time, that there is a heated debate occurring between car enthusiasts throughout the world. So, what is the big fuss about? Well, there are those car lovers who support eco-friendly motoring, and those who favour vehicle performance. Even though this argument certainly divides opinions, it’s an argument that warrants some immediate attention.
To understand this ongoing debate and perhaps actually suggest a balanced, best-of-both-worlds solution, there needs to be evidence that cars which are considered eco-friendly can also possess the same traits that high performance vehicle possess. If looking to find an alternative to one of the many small diesel cars (Toyota has an extensive choice) on the market. To understand what makes a green vehicle just that, let’s first determine the factors that might make a set of wheels eco-friendly.
Traits of Eco-friendly Cars
- They save fuel, if they use any at all
- They save power generally
- They emit low carbon emissions, the most harmful
- Most are generally small or compact
- They may or may not be made with environmentally friendly parts
- Some can be recharged each day
- They utilize power efficiently
- They may or may not run on alternative fuel
Now that a clear-cut definition of eco-friendly cars has been defined, let’s take a look at the traits of high performance vehicles.
Traits of High Performance Cars
- They have high performance engines for good acceleration
- They possess a dramatic, stylish and usually aerodynamic body
- They have high performance chassis, tyres and brakes for confidence-inspiring handling
By looking at the features for both categories, it’s easy to see that it’s a lot more difficult for a car to meet the criteria for being “green” than it is for a car to be determined high performance. However, below you will see that it is quite possible to combine the visual appeal and purposeful look of a high performance vehicle, with that of one which is also eco-friendly. Here are a couple of alternatives that also possess many of the same features desirable in high performance vehicles – one from the U.S. market and the other available on both sides of the Atlantic.
Honda Civic Hybrid
The revamped Honda Civic Hybrid has a 1.3-liter engine that boasts a 20 horsepower electric motor. Pop the hood and you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find a continuously variable transmission, along with scores of fancy features.
Unlike previous versions, the Honda Civic Hybrid provides you with the power and prestige that other eco-friendly cars lack. This high performance vehicle also utilizes its resources wisely. That’s because the braking system is now designed to charge the battery, which affords more power and range from the electric motor.
Other features that the Honda Civic Hybrid offers is the Engine Off feature, which enables you to run all systems without using the gasoline engine. Another feature is the Low Speed Valve Timing, which alters the engine’s breathing to operate with better fuel efficiency and allows you to gently accelerate or drive at faster speeds under optimum conditions. The High Speed Valve Timing feature enables you to acquire more power when you need it, and the Cylinder Idle feature can be used either during highway cruising or for deceleration. This specific feature allows you to shut down the gas engine, and the power is then transferred and powered by your electric motor.
The best of both worlds are captured in the stylish and energy efficient Toyota Prius. It possesses several eco-friendly traits desirable among car enthusiasts who are actively trying to better the environment as a whole. Not only does the Prius possess a hybrid engine, meaning it produces less of a carbon footprint than most vehicles, but when you drive it using its exclusive electric mode, you’ll produce practically no emissions.
As we have seen, one of the most sought after traits of “so called” performance cars is an aerodynamic body. Well, the Toyota Prius has a very curvy frame that mimics the high performance body of many sports cars. The Prius also comes with a high performance engine that is always working for you. Whenever you slow down or brake, this energy is recycled, giving you unsurpassed fuel economy.
The Toyota Prius is unlike any other car because not only does it offer you tremendous value, since you’ll be saving money on gas, but it also comes with two engines, one petrol and one electric, which work in tandem with one another to utilize energy efficiently.
It is encouraging that we now have choices for a vehicle that epitomizes both the highly sought after features exclusive of eco-friendly vehicles, along with the aesthetic appeal of high performance cars.