The popularity of environmentally-friendly cars is on the rise, and for good reason. If you’re in the market for a new car or soon will be, you might have been inspired by the Cadiz Water Project’s twitter feed and your own research to invest in a model that’s just as good-looking as it is safe for the environment. In any case, make sure you know just what makes an eco-friendly vehicle truly eco-friendly and not just somewhat friendly.

Lightweight Design

Most car models focused on sustainability and taking a small toll on the environment are made to be lightweight. Not only that, but that lightweight design could be made possible with the use of recycled materials. The main aim of the light design is to give you top gas mileage and make your ride as aerodynamic as possible. As for the vehicle’s interior, it should opt for durable cloth fabrics rather than genuine leather.

Electric Vehicle Mode

You might be familiar with eco-friendly vehicles you can’t even tell are on when you slide behind the wheel or in the passenger seat. This is most likely due to the electric vehicle mode, which is common in hybrid vehicles and those times when drivers desire a quiet ride. Another advantage of vehicles that have electric vehicle mode is you have better gas mileage, and that’s especially true when driving in the city where stop-and-go driving conditions are common.

Emission Sensors

Cars that emit a limited amount of emissions are better for the environment than models that belch out thick, noxious clouds of pollution. Vehicles manufactured with sensors are designed to release as few emissions as possible. Something else to think about is cars with these sensors are more likely to be able to pass your state’s emissions test, making things much easier and often less expensive when it’s time to renew your vehicle registration.

LED Lights

Rather than opting for regular headlights, cars made for maximum efficiency are often built with LED lights. These lights are brighter and use less energy while helping you see better at night and in murky driving conditions like fog. One thing to bear in mind is that you don’t want your lights to be so dazzling that they blind other drivers, which could lead to car accidents.

Radar Alerts

Not only are proximity alerts handy to have while backing up and driving, they help prevent accidents that would otherwise send mangled vehicles into the nearest landfill to rot and pollute for years to come. Such radar alerts can help extend the life of the car and save you the medical costs so common in both major and minor car accidents. A solid investment in the right car feature can pay off in more ways than one for you and the environment.

Air-Filtration Systems

Even though the air outside might not be the healthiest, the air inside your cabin can be as fresh as a clear spring day thanks to new air-filtration systems. Medical-grade systems have been known to get rid of 99 percent of all allergens, bacteria, contaminants and pollutants, keeping them from inside your car and lungs while you’re behind the wheel.

Diesel Engines

While it might seem as though diesel engines and eco-friendliness couldn’t be further from each other, the truth is diesel engines have changed for the better in recent years. If you don’t mind paying more for diesel fuel, you’re sure to be surprised at just how efficient they are. Before choosing a make and model, be sure to do your homework to see that the manufacturer actually does as good of a job as they claim when it comes to maximizing fuel efficiency while reducing CO2 emissions.

Drivers have more options than ever when finding a new car that’s environmentally friendly. That being said, it can help to know some of the most common features such a car should have to narrow down your options.

Features of an Eco-Friendly Car

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