Motorists considering a new car are now more concerned about ‘going green’ – with 50% saying that environmental friendliness has become more important to them in the past year, according to a new survey commissioned by the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) and the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA).


In the same survey, despite today’s record low fuel prices, almost as many (43%) potential buyers said that running costs are also now more important than they were.

To help drivers easily identify the most efficient environmentally friendly cars available, a new car environmental label is now in use at  new car dealerships, having recently been redesigned by the LowCVP, working with the Department for Transport and Vehicle Certification Agency.

The label enables showroom visitors to instantly see which new cars have the lowest emissions, running costs and longest electric range, making it easier to compare and find the new car most suitable for them.

There are three versions of the label – one for petrol and diesel cars, one for plug-in hybrids and a third for pure electric.

“It’s very understandable that motorists now have a desire for more efficient, environmentally friendly new cars that cost less to run with very low or zero emissions,” said Jason Doran, head of marketing at the LowCVP.  “They may however be surprised just what a difference this can make: a typical petrol car might cost around £95 per month in fuel, whereas a pure electric car only £26. That’s a saving of over £800 a year, all with zero tailpipe emissions. All this information and more is now very clearly shown on the redesigned new car environmental label.”

Sue Robinson, director of the NFDA, said: “With the increasing importance of running costs and environmental friendliness, it is crucial that motorists are enabled to choose the latest, low- and zero-emission cars that are best suited to their needs and lifestyle. Franchised retailers play a key role in informing their customers and the new car environmental label will represent a very useful tool.”