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Green Motoring

Green Motoring

Motoring does not have a good name in green circles, and yet there are useful steps that we all can take to reduce the impact of our cars and vehicles on the environment.
Ensure tyres are properly inflated, especially before long journeys
Switch off engines when stuck in stationary traffic or traffic jams
Downsize your car or choose a car with a smaller engine (if you have not done so already)
Buy a hybrid or electric car such as the Toyota Prius.
Tokyo Motor Show
The theme of the 2009 Tokyo Motor Show was low-emission greener motoring. A number of exciting new innovations in eco friendly vehicles were on show, including:
Honda Low Emission Mobility Devices
Honda Low Emission Mobility Devices
Nissan Land Glider
Nissan Land Glider
Nissan Leaf - leading, environmentally friendly, affordable, family car
Nissan Leaf - leading, environmentally friendly, affordable, family car
Toyota FT-EV II electric car
Toyota FT-EV II electric car
Plug-in Toyota Prius
Plug-in Toyota Prius

Visit Toyota Prius for more information about the Toyota Prius
Visit Toyota Highlander for more information about the Toyota Highlander Hybrid

Electric Cars
Most large car manufacturers now produce a model of electric car, and the technology is improving all the time. The performance and range of electric cars has increased tothe extent where they are becoming a viable alternative to petrol cars. However, electric cars are only as eco friendly as the electricity that powers them. If that electricity was generated at a coal fired power station, the benefit to the environment is minimal. However, if the electricity was generated by sustainable technology, i.e. solar, wind or tidal, then the electric car is a truly eco friendly mode of transport.
There are a number of fully electric cars available including the Tesla P1 Roadster.It does 0 to 60 mph in 4 seconds, reaching speeds of around 125mph. An average charge takes 3.5 hours providing enough power to travel 220 miles. Unfortunately this sort of performance is seldom matched by other electric cars, which usually lack acceleration and a fast top speed. Another downside of electric cars is that their batteries have a tendency to explode on impact.

Hydrogen Cars
Hydrogen cars are powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The cell is topped up with liquid hydrogen, which mixes with oxygen from the air to produce electricity and steam.
There are a number of technological hurdles to overcome if hydrogen vehicles are to become commonly used. For example, at present, the most common methods of creating hydrogen require electricity, much of which is currently generated using fossil fuels. Another drawback with hydrogen is that its density is very low, so hydrogen fuel tanks would have to be very big if the car was to have the same range of a conventional petrol car.

Low Emission Diesel
The big car manufacturers primary response to high fuel prices and environmental concerns has been the development of low emission diesel engines. Vehicles fitted with these engines are more fuel efficient than conventional petrol driven vehicles, and less polluting. See low emission diesel cars for more information.

Recycled Biodiesel
Some motorists have taken matters into their own hands and are producing their own biodiesel fuel from waste cooking oil and the like. See recycled biodiesel for more information.


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