12 greenest cars for tree-huggers

Looking to save gas money and cut your carbon footprint? Check out these environment-friendly cars.

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VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

127Comments
May 9, 2014 10:32PM
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Between the rare heavy metals and manufacturing techniques used to make these batteries, there is nothing green about them.
May 10, 2014 12:05AM
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I read a story a few years back that stated the reason the Toyota Prius sells so well compared to other hybrids is because visibly its identified as a hybrid car. The Honda Civic is basically a  regular Civic with a different powertrain.  Most folks can't tell the difference between a standard and hybrid Civic.  
Ya see,  the folks that driving a Prius to save the planet, want you to know they are saving the planet. 

The other issue is........ funny the environmental effects of the batteries in these hybrids are NEVER included in the equation of how green  hybrids are. 

IMHO, Clean diesel vehicles are the green vehicles for now. 
May 9, 2014 11:54PM
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  You want a green car? GET A PEDDLE CAR.
May 12, 2014 11:29AM
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     The  extent to which people have bought into claims that electric vehicles are "energy efficient", "zero polluting" and "good for the environment" is quite amazing.  But then again, the basic aim of marketing is to meet people's desires and fantasies, not to reflect reality.
     Reality:  about 68% of electrical energy generated in the US comes from fossil fuels, and about 37% of the total is generated by coal-fired power plants, one of the worst-polluting sources.  Coal-fired power plants average about 33% efficiency in converting the fuel's "thermal energy" into electricity, and while combined-cycle natural gas-fired power plants can up this conversion efficiency to around 45%, they account for only 30% of total electricity generation.  About 19% of the total US electrical energy generation comes from nuclear power plants, and most people are starting to recognize the long term environmental costs associated with these.  In comparison, all renewable energy sources combined currently contribute only about 12% of the total electric energy generated in the US, with the main contributions being hydroelectric dams at 7%, wind farms at 3.5% and biomass at 1.4%.  At present, direct solar-derived electricity accounts for less than 0.2% of the total.   
     On average, about 6% of all electric energy generated is lost between the generating source and the point of end-use (e.g., your home or a EV/hybrid re-charging station).  Then there is the approximate 10% energy loss associated with the EV battery charge/discharge cycle.  Throw in another 10% loss due to the efficiency of converting battery power into shaft horsepower measured at the vehicle drive wheels (i.e., electric motor inefficiency).
     Considering all the above, the end-to-end combined energy conversion efficiency of an electric-powered automobile is less than that of a modern gasoline powered internal combustion engine.  Modern automobiles burn gasoline as cleanly as, if not not more so, than coal-fired power plants burn coal, and with higher energy conversion efficiency.  So, the electricity you get out of your home's electrical system or at a electric vehicle charging station in not at all environmentally clean or even that "energy efficient" when applied to powering an automobile.  On a passenger-mile-driven basis, electric vehicles are really no better than gasoline-powered vehicles in terms of their environmental "footprint".
May 10, 2014 1:08AM
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It's easy to talk crap about hybrids & electric cars because they're the ideological liberal-mobile, but most of them are reliable, reasonably priced, and save gas...which isn't exactly cheap with the amount of taxes levied on it. If I never left the city I might own one (except for the smart cars which look like death traps).  But as things are, it's only practical for one single guy to own one vehicle, and I need a truck.

May 17, 2014 6:57AM
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Your typical anti-Detroit bias comes through loud and clear, why not more coverage of the Chevy Volt, Ford Fusion hybrid, Ford C-max hybrid, Fiat 500 electric, etc.? Why no mention of diesel cars? No acknowledgment that "tree-hugging environmentalists"  are normally lacking any science or engineering backgrounds, or that most media automotive "experts" are non-engineers who have never built any vehicle other than a toy plastic Revell 1:25-scale model. Diesel cars can run on biodiesel fuel, made from soybeans or recycled French fry oil. Then there's the indisputable fact that Toyota intentionally makes the most unsafe vehicles of any carmaker selling in the US market. And the fact that media mouthpiece sham "authorities" like Consumer Reports, claim to "test" vehicles to obtain "predicted reliability" statements, not based on testing to failure and Weibull distributions, but on marketing surveys of new car buyers, which gives no basis of empirical reliability whatsoever. Everyone American who thinks only Asians can build good vehicles, can kindly move their ignorant traitor's arses to Japan or Korea and enjoy the absurd cost of living there.
May 12, 2014 2:21PM
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Not one diesel...so typical of American media coverage. In places (like Europe) where environmental regulations are even more restrictive and gas more expensive, diesel dominates. Whatever...
May 17, 2014 8:12AM
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Whats so green about an electric car?When you plug them in your burning coal most of the time.
May 9, 2014 7:59PM
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The real question is are they any good?   For the tree hugging idiots the answer is yes.  But for the people in real life those cars are a piece if crap.....
May 12, 2014 7:22AM
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"12 Greenest Cars for Tree-Huggers."  Did anybody else see the comedy in that article title?  I think they do it on purpose.
May 12, 2014 1:18PM
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The method used to rank these has to be flawed if the volt and other plug ins didn't make the list, but conventional hybrids did...
May 17, 2014 8:29AM
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Ice sheets melting off at record speed, Water disappearing in Texas and California, wicked increases in deadly violent storms, people wearing gas masks trying to save their lungs in China ? Naww, green cars ain't gonna save this one ! Luckily none of us will be here in a 100 years to see what has happened .
May 17, 2014 4:33AM
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Why are these cars labeled as good for the earth?....no car is good for the earth.....some less harmful than others... but good.....none is......jejejeje
May 12, 2014 7:22AM
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The only real green vehicles are bicycles.

The ones shown above are smug producing coffins for idiots.

May 17, 2014 10:45AM
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Poverty is at a 50 year high after 5 full years of democrat policies
Illegal drone murders of world citizens has never been higher
Spying has never been more prevalent 
Salaries are at a 20 year low
The size of the US workforce is at a 70 year LOW, 52 million people on food stamps
Democrats own these things
Not bush not Cheney but the junior president and his failed party, no one else
Lmao
.1% growth last quarter. Democrats are failures
May 17, 2014 1:20PM
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I bought a 2009 Camry Hybrid. I get 41 MPG on the road and 34-35 MPG in  town. Every time gas prices rise, my car is more valuable.

BTW I am not a tree hugger.  My Camry Hybrid rides like every other Camry. It  has heated leather seats. It is a great car.

May 17, 2014 11:19AM
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msn discrimnates, you act like gm is the only manufacture with a recall even though toyota had huge amounts of recalls last year . no chevrolet volt or chevrolet spark ev ? msn is no better than MR. STERRLING.
May 10, 2014 12:06AM
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Wait, WAIT! If a tree hugger holds his/her breath for 4 days, it gets cancelled out by all the Chinese who farted building the parts for any of these cars. Sorry, I just couldn't sit back and watch without being a kill joy. Now, breathe in deeply and enjoy the batteries in your 4 wheeled vibrator. Yuhavbinfukd appreciates the business.
May 9, 2014 7:41PM
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Really!! MSN using the term "Tree Huggers" The same msn people who cry foul about oil prices, companies making products and fouling the air they breath. Never met a Tree Hugger, only seen environmentalist in my time.
May 12, 2014 10:13AM
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Absolutely sick of this 'green' thing. There is no green. We are always looking for a something-for-nothing work around so we can drive to Walmart forever.  Does not exist; cannot exist. Follow the energy.
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