Well, the Toyota Prius is a trendy hybrid but it will only be considered cool for so long. The just concluded Paris Motor Show was host to an amazing introduction of new green luxury cars. Hybrids prevail in this article as we name and review some of the green luxury cars that were eye catching both aesthetically and performance/efficiency wise:
1. Ferrai 599 SA APERTA
Badged HELE – or High Emotion, Low Emissions – the package includes stop-start and cuts CO2 emissions from 299g/km to 270g/km. On the urban cycle that represents “real life use by a client” it improves by 23%.
The HELE innovations include on-demand power supply, tweaked gearing and revised radiator fans to all help improve the California’s efficiency.
The engineers have also contrived to find a bit more torque, the efficiency gains releasing an extra 18lb ft in certain situations. This boosts both eco credentials and performance.
2. Lexus CT200h hybrid hatch
The CT200h is certainly a sexier hybrid than the Prius.
Since diesel is still popular, Lexus is also showing a revised IS range with an improved diesel version, announced before the show.
The IS200d replaces the IS220d and comes with a 150hp 2.2-litre diesel engine boasting 55.4mpg and 134g/km, the latter a significant improvement on the 148g/km of the outgoing 220d – but it comes at the expense of reduced performance.
3. BMW 1 Series Coupé ActiveE
BMW says electric drive is the next logical progression of its EfficientDynanics strategy. It’ll put its toe into the water with trial runs of 70 electric Coupé ActiveE early next year.
4. Peugeot 3008 HYBrid4
It is said to be the world’s first diesel hybrid and has been a long time. Combining eco hybrid with eco diesel yields 99g/km CO2 and 74.4mpg despite it being a four wheel drive model.
5. Mercedes S250 CDi
Mercedes has ‘done the unthinkable’ here putting a four-cylinder diesel in a big luxury saloon car with near-50mpg and 149g/km CO2.
6. SEAT IBe electric coupé, new SEAT Alhambra
It is strikingly low and wide; the bonnet is able to be low because it has a 75hp electric motor instead of a combustion engine. 18kWh lithium ion batteries are mounted underneath the boot.
SEAT has 0-62mph in 9.7 seconds and a restricted top speed of 100mph. The electric drive range is quoted at 81 miles.
The IBe is being developed because SEAT reckons electric cars are vital for city centres. This is why the compact SEAT IBe is packed with high-tech gadgetry to keep city dwellers happy.
Smartphone connectivity is being demonstrated here at Paris, in fact. This allows the driver to check systems, set the satnav using bespoke apps and even ‘drag’ music files to the car for playback.
7. Skoda Octavia Green e Line
As electric cars are becoming ever more realistic, value brand Skoda will, next year, start testing its first-ever electric vehicle, the Octavia Green e Line concept which has an 86-mile range and 0-62mph in 12 seconds, the five-seat estate is designed to minimise compromises.
Ultimately, hybrid and electric car technology is developing, and it goes without saying, the luxury car niche will borrow hugely form those advances. Among the most green conscious chaps we have around are the affluent and they will want to drive around town in cars that have something more to brag about.