Green Car Choices for Families

The environment is on the tip of everyone’s tongues. We are all trying to do our part to help sustain our earth and reverse the damage already done. With new innovations hitting the market to help us help the earth, the automobile industry is helping as well. Since the launch of the Toyota Prius in 2006, many car manufacturers have released their own eco-friendly automobiles. This sparked a competition to give the consumers the best car for the best cause. Now with so many cars to choose from, it may be overwhelming to find the right car for your family. With new technology in green driving, the eco cars are getting bigger and better. With so many new choices out there, there are a few things to take into consideration when choosing the right green car for your family needs.

In the past when you asked about the power of a car, it was all about horsepower. Now when you ask about power, it could mean the type of fuel. From electric, to biodiesel and, in the future, hydrogen, cars are starting to run on everything but gasoline. When choosing the right fuel type you should take into consideration the way you use your car. If it is strictly local driving, a fully electric car may be right for you. The Mitsubishi i is a fully electric car that seats 4 comfortably while giving you plenty of storage. It offers 112 MPGe (Miles per Gallon Gasoline Equivalent), which is currently the furthest on the market.

This means with each charge you can drive 112 miles before having to charge again. However, it is not suggested to go over 67 miles without charging. This is a great option if you are mostly using your car for in town errands. As with most electric cars the real benefits are the zero emissions and the savings on fuel. It costs approximately $3.70 for every 100 miles you drive. If you drive the average 15,000 miles a year the cost on your electric bill for the year would be around $550. Compare that to the amount you spend on gas and the car basically pays for itself.

If you have a larger family and need more space than a regular sedan can provide, there are other options available these days. With the new power systems being developed, the eco-cars are getting larger. Hybrid SUV’s and Minivans are becoming more available and fully electric options are coming in the near future.

For now, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid comes with third row seating and can fit more than 5 people comfortably and for a great price. Though you won’t see the savings or the zero emissions a fully electric car will give you, there are still benefits to choosing a hybrid SUV. The increased MPG will still offer savings as well as help save the planet. The cleaner engine offers fewer emissions than its older model and you will feel better driving it around town knowing you are doing your part.

With most cars, you want the option of packing the family up and taking a trip. With fully electric cars, you are limited to how far you can go and where you can charge your car. Though there are optional kits you can purchase for quicker charging out in public places, sometimes you still need the gas to go. If you plan to take longer trips and want a car you can drive worry free, then perhaps an electric/gas option is what you are looking for.

The Chevy Volt might just be the car for you. With the option of running on electric only or switching to gas on road trips, you can still utilize the savings in town without the worry of charging while on the road. At 95 MPGe on electricity, you can still run purely on emissions free electricity while in town with the added bonus of 35 mpg when you take longer trips. This may be the right car for those looking to drive near and far until charging stations are more readily available.

Currently charging stations are in development to let car owners make the change from gasoline powered vehicles to strictly electric. The future is definitely looking greener as car manufacturers are constantly improving the distance and efficiency of electric cars. For us, it means more savings, no emissions, and a greener world for our children. If you are looking to make the transition from gas to electric, there are plenty of options available. Take your time when deciding the right vehicle for by deciding what you want to use your car for.

About the Author

Marcie McDonald is an insurance consultant who writes for She recommends checking online sites to compare car insurance companies, and also to check for no deposit car insurance quotes before making your choice.