Green NCAP is a new independent initiative created to test and rate new cars based on their green credentials. A subsidiary of NCAP (the European New Car Assessment Programme), Green NCAP hopes to encourage car manufacturers to design and build more eco-friendly cars by promoting vehicles which are cleaner, more energy efficient and less harmful to the environment.
At present, Green NCAP are only testing cars based on the energy they use while they are being driven. Green NCAP are using a broad range of tests, including clean air and energy efficiency tests carried out in a laboratory and on the road. Green NCAP hope to eventually measure the entire life-cycle of a vehicle, which would include the energy used by the car manufacturer during production, right through to the scrapping and recycling of the car at the end of its life.
Twelve cars - many of which are available through the Motability Scheme - have been rated by Green NCAP during the first round of tests.
The Hyundai Ioniq Electric and BMW i3, both 100% electric vehicles, achieved a maximum five star rating.
The Volkswagen up! GTI was rewarded with four stars.
The current Ford Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost received two stars.
One star ratings were given to the Audi A7 50 TDI, the Volvo XC40 T5 and the Subaru Outback 2.5.
“For years, there has been a mismatch between the way cars perform in regulatory tests and how they perform on the road. Consumers often don’t get the fuel economy officially claimed for their vehicles and end up paying for the difference in fuel. Now, legislation is tightening-up, but consumer testing can complement it and go a step further: it can really encourage car manufacturers to beat their competitors by innovating in the field of energy efficiency and emission reduction. We’re confident that they will respond to the challenge, to the benefit of car buyers and the environment.” Pierre Castaing, Chairman of Euro NCAP, said.
Many more popular cars will be tested over the coming months but, for the time being, Green NCAP recommend that drivers looking for the greenest option should go for an electric car as they are the cleanest and most efficient overall. The Smart fortwo, the Smart forfour and the Renault Zoe are the only 100% electric cars that can currently be leased through the Motability Scheme.