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Plug-In, Hybrid Top Green Vehicle Rankings List

January 28, 2016

The Chevrolet Spark EV finished second in ACEEE's Greenest Vehicle List. Photo courtesy of GM.
The Chevrolet Spark EV finished second in ACEEE's Greenest Vehicle List. Photo courtesy of GM.

For the first time, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE)’s Greenest Vehicle List is dominated by plug-in and hybrid vehicles; not a single vehicle with only an internal combustion engine appears.

The smart fortwo electric drive tops the Greenest Vehicle List for the third year in a row, according to ACEEE. The newest editions are the Volkswagen eGolf and Kia’s Soul electric vehicle.

This is ACEEE’s 19th annual comprehensive environmental ratings for vehicles. A green score is a measure that incorporates lifecycle greenhouse gas and criteria pollutant emissions. This year’s methodology includes new estimates of emissions from fuel sourcing, transportation and distribution as well as Clean Power Plan adjustments to electricity emissions, according to ACEEE.

ACEEE’s Greenest Vehicle List with green scores:

1. Mercedes-Benz Smart Fortwo Electric Drive Convertible/Coupe (score: 63)
2. Chevrolet Spark EV (score: 63)
3. Fiat 500E (score: 62)
4. Toyota Prius Eco (score: 61)
5. Volkswagen E-Golf (score: 61)
6. Nissan Leaf S/Leaf SV (score: 61)
7. Kia Soul Electric (score: 59)
8. Toyota Prius C (score: 59)
9. Toyota Prius (score: 58)
10. Ford Focus Electric (score: 57)
11. Chevrolet Volt (score: 56)
12. Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid (score: 56)

“The 2016 scores are in, and plug-in electric vehicles are outpacing all other vehicle offerings in terms of environmental friendliness,” said Shruti Vaidyanathan, ACEEE’s lead vehicle analyst. “Fortunately, the electricity sector is slated to become cleaner over the life of model-year 2016 vehicles, thanks to the Clean Power Plan, and that has bumped up electric vehicles’ green scores this year. Nevertheless, it’s important to acknowledge that how green your electric vehicle truly is depends on the electricity it uses to charge.”

Other vehicles that made ACEE’s Greener Choices List (with scores above 40) include the Honda Fit, Ford C-Max Hybrid, Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid, Chevrolet Trax, Ford Transit Connect, Land Rover/Range Rover Evoque and Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon pickups.

ACEEE also created a list of the “Meanest Vehicles” with green scores ranging from 26 to 20. Some of these vehicles include the Toyota Tundra, Lexus LX 570, Mercedes-Benz G65 AMG, Chevrolet/GMC Express/Savana, Bentley Mulsanne and Ford Transit T150.

For more information about ACEEE’s green rankings, visit www.greenercars.org.

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