greenest cars - britains most environmently friendly cars

green machines

Ever wondered what the cleanest, greenest cars you can buy are? Well here are some that will change the way we view clean and economical motoring

Environmentalism is all well and good if it involves using technology to effect change rather than altering our behaviour but sometimes a bit of both is the best solution. Downsizing to a cleaner vehicle is not the depressing option it once was and some of the ten greenest vehicles on sale today or in the very near future will be even good fun to drive as well.

We've listed what we think are ten of the most environmentally friendly cars based on carbon dioxide emissions and fuel consumption (urban cold cycle) yet still offering a varied choice of styles and performance. In no particular order then:

Vauxhall Ampera

This is a petrol electric model where the petrol engine is designed to re-charge the batteries and not drive the wheels of the car. It is claimed that the Ampere achieves 175 mpg and emits just 40 g/km of C02.

Peugeot 3008 Hybrid

The Peugeot 3008 Hybrid was the first production diesel hybrid and offers customers a family sized vehicle with very green credentials. It delivers nearly 75 mpg and only emits 99 g/km of C02.

Kia Rio Diesel

Kia has eschewed the hybrid trend and instead plumped for a more efficient diesel engine for its latest Rio. The 1.1-litre diesel delivers 88mpg and emits just 85 g/km of C02.

Volvo V60 Plug-in

Available in 2013, the Volvo V60 Plug-in is another diesel electric hybrid estate offering incredible economy in a four wheel drive configuration. The manufacturer is claiming up to 150mpg whilst emitting a paltry 49 g/km of C02.

Toyota Prius Plug-in

Similar in concept to the Volvo V60 Plug-in, the Toyota Prius Plug-in will deliver 134mpg and emit just 49 g/km of C02 from its petrol/electric power plant.

Ford Focus ECOnetic

Ford has followed the same thinking as Kia with its impressive Ford Focus ECOnectic diesel. This car produces just 89 g/km of C02 and delivers 83mpg.

Renault Zoe

The Renault Zoe is an all electric car like Nissan's Leaf. In fact the two companies share technologies. The Zoe will have a range of around 100 miles and cost about half as much as the Leaf at about £15,000.

Lexus GS450h

Lexus has shown that you don't have to sacrifice luxury and performance to go green with its GS450h. This car can be driven in an 'emissions free mode for short distances but in hybrid mode delivers 45mpg and emits just 145 g/km of C02.

Renault Twizy

Another all electric car from Renault, the Twizy is a fun, single seater with zero emissions. It has a sixty mile range and a top speed of 47 miles per hour.

Fisker Karma

If you really want to push the boat out and have money to burn then the Fisker Karma might be just up your street. This extended range electric vehicle offers Aston Martin looks but delivers 100mpg and emits just 83 g/km of C02.

In case you were wondering what the worst performing cars were, it'll probably be no surprise to know that Bentley, Aston Martin, Lamborghini and Ferrari monopolise the top spots. Going green with envy doesn't count though.