Other alternatives to petrol cars

All of the below vehicles produce some emissions.

For more information see Comparison of Transport Fuels Report.

  • Hybrid Petrol/electric vehicle – Mazda 5 Hydrogen Hybrid
  • Hybrid LPG/electric vehicle – Hyundai Elantra is anticipated to be available in Australia in the later part of 2008. Hyundai Elantra
  • Hybrid petrol/electic car. Hybrids generally use less fuel and produce fewer emissions than normal petrol cars. However, the green credentials of pre-2003 Toyota Prius models is frequently disputed. Many manufacturers now have hybrids vehicles available.
  • Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) is better because you can charge up your car without using the onboard combustion engine, perhaps even use renewable energy to put some green energy in the battery. Plugging your car into your house is much better for the environment then using the onboard engine to charge the battery.
  • Compressed Natural Gas(CNG) car or convert your car to CNG and refuel at home. (Note that the Honda Civic GX has been named the world’s greenest vehicle 5 years running). Advanced Fuels Technologies expects to have 10 passenger cars approved for CNG conversion in Australia by June 2009. Hilux 2.6 and Hilux V6 by July 2008. Late model Toyota Camary’s (2004 or later) are anticipated to be the first passenger cars to be approved for CNG Conversion in Australia. (sept 2008?). See also: LA 2008: Toyota Camry CNG Hybrid, AutoblogGreen
  • Diesel car. Diesel engines are more efficient than petrol ones – some have fuel consumption figures as good as hybrids at around 5 litres per 100km. Some diesels can also use diesel biofuel made from plant oils. The most efficient small diesel car available in Australia in 2008 is the Hyundai i30 which uses 4.5l/100km. However, fine particulates produced by diesel engines are a health hazard, even though modern diesel engines have a diesel particulate filter (DPF).

Gas conversions

If you already own a petrol car:

  • an LPG conversion enables you to use cheaper LPG (liquid petroleum gas), but note that most LPG is a by-product of oil refining, so when oil supplies dwindles the price of LGP will rise along with petrol and diesel.
  • an CNG conversion enables you to use CNG (compressed natural gas), which is more abundant than crude oil reserves, but there are currently very few refuelling locations available in Australia, largely due to inadequate government policies to establish them. There are several active lobbyists attempting to change this. There currently only two public CNG refuelling station located in Melbourne. Currently there are no pre-converted CNG passengers vehicles being offered in Australia.


Categorised as Transport