CNW Marketing’s study on the true, real-life environmental impact of automobiles wasn’t well-received by everyone. You can read about it here at GoodCarBadCar, but it appears that CNW’s study is now outdated. Cardiff University has teamed up with Clifford Thames to provide consumers with another list.
Granted, this study took a long look at cars we North Americans aren’t able to purchase – and it shows. However, that very fact – that we can’t buy’em – ought to tell us something. The vehicles that cause less harm to the environment either wouldn’t be accepted in the USA or Canada or are perceived to be of little interest to us.
Leaders of the study looked at emissions (CO2 and NOx, for instance) as well as their manufacturing, recyclability, size, and the cost of the energy required. Before you check out the list, hear ye this: Paul Nieuwenhuis from Cardiff Uni. says that all the efforts put towards clean diesel and hybrid tech will not suffice if automakers are to meet the targets now being discussed for European Union emissions in Brussels. Weight loss, suggests the Nieuwenhuis, is crucial. He also points out that creating smaller luxury cars would have long-term benefits for everyone’s pocketbooks. Follow the chain: wealthy buyers tire of their cars more quickly and resale values tumble; but although buyers of second-hand cars are perhaps financially capable of purchasing the car they’re unable to afford the running costs. Smaller cars running more efficient (and less powerful engines) would make it more likely that regular Joe’s and Jane’s would buy that used BMW. Higher second-hand values would also lift the image of respective brands.
Canadians and Americans, look at it this way. We’re able to buy one car that’s almost at the top of the list, a convertible. We also have access to both Toyota’s, but the Yaris we can buy has an engine-and-a-half compared with the one in the list. Oh, and the other Toyota ranks twelfth. Hey, wait, one more. We can buy Mini Cooper’s. Without, albeit, a diesel engine.