The ten best green cars for 2013

The green market promises to be bigger and better than ever before in 2013.

Hybrids and electric car technology have made enormous strides throughout 2012, with manufacturers improving their environmental credentials and producing more eco-friendly models than ever before.

Some of the models currently on the market offer fantastic economy, are affordable and a wonderful option for people looking for a low-emission car that’s right for their needs.

Below are the ten best green cars available for 2013:

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Peugeot iOn

The Peugeot iOn and the Citroen C-Zero are both based on the same build. The iOn has the benefits of low running costs and zero road tax, and is also an attractive to model to own. Its best features are its range of safety and security equipment. The iOn is able to achieve a range of 93 miles on its 64hp motor.

A four-door, four-seat compact car, the Peugeot iOn is one of the first in the UK – and you can get one at Perrys Milton Keynes, which is one of a handful of electric car specialists in the Peugeot stable.

A new Peugeot iOn is available from £26,216.

Citroen C-Zero

The Citroen C-Zero has a lot in common with the Peugeot iOn. The C-Zero is also able to achieve 93 miles and has a top speed of 80mph.

The C-Zero has a motor that acts like a generator, using the car’s kinetic energy to give the car a boost. The C-Zero is attractive and takes seven hours to charge from a conventional socket.

Based on the same build as the iOn, it also comes in four-door, four-seat variation but the C-Zero comes with a selection of fun body graphic designs.

A new Citroen C-Zero is available from £26,216.

Renault Zoe

The Renault Zoe is at the front of the French manufacturer’s Z.E. range and is able to achieve a top speed of 84mph with its 88hp motor. It has a range of 130 miles and needs between six to eight hours to fully charge from a standard socket.

The Zoe also comes with Renault’s leading R-Link technology and is complemented by a huge range of practical features. It is also the first car to have a dedicated air purifier which can also act as a kind of scented-oil gadget for better in-car ambiance.

A new Renault Zoe is available from £13,650.

Renault Twizy

The Renault Twizy looks a lot like a golf buggy, and is classed as a light quadricycle meaning it can be driven by 16-year-olds. Its quirk is a huge part of its appeal though, with the 100 per cent electric city car winning a number of international awards.

It doesn’t even have doors as standard, although these can be added along with a detachable window to keep out the elements.

A full charge takes three-and-a-half hours and it has a top speed of 50mph. Its 17hp motor gives the Twizy a range of 60 miles.

A new Renault Twizy is available from £6,690.

Renault Fluence Z.E.

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The Renault Fluence Z.E. has phenomenal acceleration and has a range of 115 miles thanks to its impressive 94bhp motor.

An impressive four-door saloon, the Fluence has a comfortable, practical interior with enough space for five adults. The Fluence takes 10-12 hours to fully charge from a standard 240v supply, and is popular with families because it’s affordable to maintain.

One of the more family-oriented saloons, the Renault Fluence Z.E. is the brand’s halo model and one of the first electric cars to offer genuine practicality.

A new Renault Fluence Z.E. is available from £22,495.

Nissan Leaf

The Nissan Leaf has previously been voted World Car of the Year 2011, and is without doubt the most critically-acclaimed electric car released so far.

With a maximum speed of 90mph and a range of 100 miles, the Nissan Leaf has a five-star Euro NCAP rating and takes eight hours to charge from a standard domestic socket.

The best-selling electric car in the UK last year, the Leaf looks like a conventional car but offers incredible practicality including a large hatchback boot and plenty of passenger space.

A new Nissan Leaf is available from £25,990.

Vauxhall Ampera

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The Ampera is the current European Car of the Year, and can boast an impressive range of over 300 miles thanks to its petrol-powered range extender.

The Ampera is able to reach 25-50 miles on electricity alone before the motor kicks in, which extends the range to 350 miles by charging the battery on the move, and the Ampera can be charged through a standard 240V power socket in six hours.

The Vauxhall Ampera is a premium five-door hatchback that can seat four in comfort and comes with a generous specification as standard.

A new Vauxhall Ampera is available from £29,995 with the government’s £5k electric car grant.

Chevrolet Volt

The Chevrolet Volt is near-identical to the Vauxhall Ampera, but with a different styling and a Chevrolet badge. The Volt has similar performance figures to the Ampera and shares its 2012 Car of the Year award. The Chevrolet Volt comes with a 3-year/60,000 mile warranty and one year’s Chevrolet Roadside Assistance.

A new Chevrolet Volt is available from £29,995 with the government’s £5k electric car grant.

Citroen DS5 Hybrid4

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The Citroen DS5’s Hybrid4 technology combines the performance of its HDi diesel engines with an electric motor, giving it CO2 emissions of 91g/km – and subsequently offers free road tax and beneficial company car rates for business buyers.

It also has a full electric mode for urban driving and an acceleration booster. The Hybrid4 has a top speed of 131mph and is able to go from 0-62mph in 8.3 seconds.

A new Citroen DS5 Hybrid4 is available from £22,400.

Peugeot 3008 HYbrid4

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A winner in the What Car? Green Awards 2011for Best SUV, the Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4 can achieve 74.4mpg and emit just 99g/km of CO2, making it road tax exempt.

The car’s centre console, similar to the DS5’s, makes choosing from the four driving modes – Auto, Sport, 4WD and ZEV – simple. The 3008 is an attractive, practical family car to consider.

The Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4 also holds the distinction of being the world’s first mass-produced diesel-hybrid model.

A new Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4 is available from £26,995.