The Best Eco-Friendly Automobiles of 2020
Everyone is looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and become more eco-friendly as we move closer to the planet’s 2030 deadline, after which the damage done from climate change may be irreversible.We can recycle, compost, grow our own produce and only buy from local farms. We can also lessen our reliance on single-use plastics, such as straws and flatware. However, there is one thing that most of us can’t avoid — our daily commute. We might want to go green, but you can’t stop going to work just because you don’t want to drive your car. Thankfully, the push toward an eco-friendly society has led many manufacturers to create more sustainable automobiles.
With that in mind, here are some of the best eco-friendly cars and trucks of 2020.
2020 Hyundai Ioniq
When you’re looking for an eco-friendly automobile, you generally have three options — a hybrid, a plug-in hybrid or electric. Most models only offer one of these types, but with the Honda Ioniq, you can pick and choose what works best for you. The straight-up hybrid nets you 50 miles per gallon, which is nothing to shake a stick at. If you want something even better, however, the plug-in style gives you an extra 29 miles of battery-powered travel before the gasoline engine kicks in.
You have a fully electric option as well, which may be the most eco-friendly choice of the bunch. Everyone wants to drive an electric car these days. Uber is even working on a fully-electric fleet, requiring all drivers in the United Kingdom to make the switch by 2022.Unfortunately, this model is where the Ioniq lacks — its maximum effective range between charges is a mere 124 miles. Still, if you’re only using it to drive to and from work, it’s one of the most affordable green vehicles on the market.
2020 Toyota Prius
The Toyota Prius might be the butt of a lot of jokes, but it’s the original eco-friendly hybrid. When it came out, it was one of the first of its kind, the plug-in model that launched a thousand copycats. The Prius is on its 4th generation in 2020, which says a lot about the staying power of this particular brand. Bringing one home will set you back between $25,155 and $33,330, depending on the features you want.
This iconic vehicle can get up to 58 miles per gallon if you opt for the Eco model, while others get anywhere between 48 and 52 mpg, depending on driving conditions and traffic. It doesn’t have a lot of power, but the little hybrid engine can manage 120 horsepower — more than enough to get this eco-friendly car from point A to Point B.
2020 Honda Insight
Some brands try to make their electric and hybrid models stand out. When you think of the Prius, for example, you can’t help but picture it’s fairly unique aesthetic. Honda didn’t want you to feel like a sore thumb with their cars, and that’s where the Insight comes in.
This sleek hybrid doesn’t look much different than the brand’s iconic Civic sedan. Instead of worrying about when you’ll make your next trip to the gas station, however, the Insight offers a combined 47 mpg on the road.
The nice thing about the Insight is that it drives like a car that might cost you twice. Therefore, not only are you doing something good for the planet, but you also get to ride in style and comfort. Just make sure you’re keeping your tires inflated — even losing a few PSI can damage your fuel economy and shorten the time between fill-ups.
2020 Porsche Taycan
If you’re looking for something with a bit more style and don’t mind the inflated price tag that goes with it, Porsche introduced a fully electric sports car for the 2020 model year. This sexy vehicle is the first of its kind with an 800-volt electrical system that ties into a two-speed transmission — something unheard of in electric cars before this.
Porsche built this eco-friendly vehicle for speed. The twin electric motors crank out anywhere from 522 to 750 horsepower, with the Turbo S model managing to accelerate from 0 to 60 in a mind-blowing 2.4 seconds. It’s fast, it’s sexy and it’s sustainable. If you can afford the $100k+ price tag, this might be the best eco-friendly option for you.
Any Tesla Model
You can’t have a list of eco-friendly vehicles without at least a nod at the brand that ramped up the electric vehicle craze — Tesla. We don’t want to pick any single model because, if we’re honest, you can be eco-friendly with anything in the brand’s lineup, from the Roadster sports car to the Model X SUV.
The Future of Green, Sustainable Driving
If you can’t avoid your daily commute by working from home, and it’s too long or dangerous to consider walking or biking, there are still ways you can be eco-friendly. Consider replacing your daily driver with one of the hybrids or fully electric vehicles we’ve listed here. You won’t be disappointed.
About the author
Jane Marsh is the Editor-in-Chief of Environment.co. She covers topics related to climate policy, sustainability, renewable energy and more.