On The Road: Vehicles... Vehicle Choice
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You can easily save hundreds or thousands of dollars each year in fuel costs. Rent a large vehicle only when you need it, or take your savings and rent a convertible on a sunny day!

Reduce your greenhouse gas emissions by using more fuel efficient vehicles.  Manual transmissions are more efficient than automatics (and some might say more fun)!

Find out what's the best and safest car for you by visiting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Remember, a big car doesn't automatically mean a safe car.

Smaller vehicles tend to use less resources (materials and energy) during their manufacture.

Choose a vehicle that meets your regular use needs and then compare fuel efficiency within that vehicle category.

The average car will be on Lower Mainland roads for about 20 years, so your choice today will have long term impacts.  Join car-sharing or rent to get a vehicle with special capacity or function for those not so often applications.  The money you save in the purchase price and fuel bills will more than cover an occasional use rental!

Myth: Small cars aren't safe.

"SUV's do not provide superior protection for child occupants [as compared to a car] and that age- and size- appropriate restraints and rear seating for children under 13 years are critically important because of the increased risk of a rollover crash [in SUV's]."  - Dennis Durbin, MD, co-author of "Risk of Injury to Child Passengers in Sport Utility Vehicles" from the Jan. 1, 2006 issue of Pediatrics.  

Fuel efficient vehicle incentives.

Hybrid vehicles pay no PST, saving up to $2000.  In addition, owners of highly fuel efficient vehicles (Honda Insight, Toyota Prius, Mercedes smart car, and Honda Civic hybrids) get a break on off-street parking at EasyPark, the City of Vancouver's parking operator.  Register with EasyPark, and you can get 50% off of parking at all of their sites.

Check EnerGuide fuel economy ratings.

When purchasing a vehicle, be sure to look for the EnerGuide label showing the city and highway fuel consumption ratings and an estimated annual fuel cost for that particular vehicle.

What about electric vehicles?
Check out the Vancouver Electric Vehicle Association www.veva.ca for information about Electric Vehicles.
Low speed electric cars are now available in BC www.itiselectric.com and are suitable for short trips in town.  Electric bicycles and scooters are now available at many shops in Vancouver and are one of the cleanest means of transportation. 


How much difference does it make?

After you've determined the vehicle size and type that meets your regular use needs, consider the fuel economy of various models within that category.  Within any given vehicle category, fuel efficiency can vary significantly (even for the same make and model depending on features).

This table shows a limited example of how fuel efficiency can carry for similar vehicles. You can also compare vehicles for yourself at Natural Resources Canada Office of Energy Efficiency website.


Mid Size Cars
City Driving Fuel Efficiency
(Litres required to drive 100 km)*
Average Annual Fuel Cost
($/yr @ $1.10/L)*
Annual Annual Greenhouse Gas Emissions
(CO2 per year)*
Ford Taurus
11.8L /100km
$2222 4.8 tonnes
Toyota Camry
9.8 - 11.5L /100km
$1824 - $2112 4.0 - 4.6 tonnes
Honda Accord
9.0 - 11.2L /100km $1715 - $2068 3.7 - 4.5 tonnes
Honda Accord Hybrid 7.9L /100km $1540 3.4 tonnes
Toyota Prius (Hybrid)
4.0L /100km $902 2.0 tonnes

Toyota 4Runner (4x4)
13.5 - 14.6L /100km
$2640 - $2882
5.8 - 6.3 tonnes
Honda CRV (AWD)
10.6 - 11.1L /100km $2068 - $1278 4.5 - 4.8 tonnes
Ford Escape Hybrid (4x4) 7.1L /100km $1605 3.5 tonnes
* depending on engine size and transmission selected.

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