The 5 Green Cars That You Actually Want To Drive
When people talk about eco-friendly cars they tend not to include the words “fun” or “excitement” in their lingo. Why is that? Should being frugal with the go-juice turn each road into a beige wasteland? We don’t think so. There’s no point to having a green car if you can’t get even a little excited about driving it. So in the spirit of Earth Day (which is today), here are five ec0-friendly cars that you’ll absolutely want to drive. Ford Fiesta SFE 32 city / 45 highway MPG Electric may be the way of the future, but efficient gas engines aren’t down for the count yet. The 1.0L three-cylinder found in the Ford Fiesta SFE is heralding the cause, recording North America’s highest miles per gallon of any non-hybrid vehicle with a scarcely believable 45 mpg highway. Lest we forget it’s bolted to one of the best handling small hatchback chassis around. Have your cake and eat it too. PHOTOS: See our gallery of Ken Block's Ford Fiesta Tesla Model S 94 city / 97 highway MPGe
The Model S has been wooing customers far and wide thanks to its luxurious cocktail of performance and emissions. It goes without saying; you wont find a more comfortable or better-equipped electric car on the market, though for the starting price of $70,000 that should be expected. The standard 60-kWh Model S produces 235-horsepower, and if the silent acceleration doesn’t set you back in your seat, the all-electric 208 miles of driving range will.
PHOTOS: Check out our Tesla Model S gallery
The BMW i3 begs the question, “Why buy anything else?” Assembled from carbon fiber and aluminum; the i3 offers practicality in the form of a hatchback, performance thanks to 170hp, and frugality credited to its 22-kWh lithium-ion battery. Overall range is limited to 80-100 all-electric miles, but cough up a couple grand more and BMW will include a gas sipping two-cylinder engine for upwards of 200 miles in range. It was also named World Green Car of the Year, and World Car Design of the Year. Look out, Tesla.
PHOTOS: See more pics of the BMW i3
122 city / 108 highway MPGe
In a world of hefty carbon footprints, the gas-powered Fiat 500 is already a fairly light-stepper, but its all-electric cousin – the Fiat 500e – is the true tap dancer. This minute hatchback packs a large 24-kWh lithium-ion battery, slung low in the vehicle in order to keep handling as nimble as possible. Despite the nearly 600 pounds of added weight, the torquey 111-hp electric motor zips the 500e from 0-60mph in 8.4 seconds, a full second quicker than the base gasoline model.
PHOTOS: View our entire Fiat 500 gallery
30 city / 41 highway MPG
Mazda is having a bit of a renaissance, with the advent of its uber-efficient Skyactiv powerplants. It also doesn’t hurt that the new Mazda3 is exceedingly pretty. So far, the thrifty-yet-pungent 2.0L and 2.5L gasoline mills have nabbed rave reviews from consumers and press alike. Expect half the country to turn into hyper-milers when Mazda finally releases its US-market Skyactiv diesel.
PHOTOS: See more pics of the 2014 Mazda 3