Electric cars and hybrid vehicles
In terms of emissions, electric vehicles are obviously top of the table. The first mass-produced electric vehicle available in New Zealand, the Mitsubishi Imeiv, was launched into the market in July. Nissan intends to bring the allelectric Leaf to market next year. Meanwhile Toyota’s Plug-in Hybrid vehicle is being trialled in New Zealand by Massey University. The new Prius can travel solely as an electric vehicle for 30 kilometres before the battery is exhausted and the car switches to running on fuel. The idea for the car is not to restrict it to city use only, but make it possible for most city trips to be electric only. Unlike the standard hybrid Prius, these vehicles feature lithium-ion batteries and achieve official fuel consumption of 2.6 litres/100km with CO2 emissions of 59 grams/km.