By subscribing we will send you emails containing offers. You can read our privacy policy here.

Volkswagen T-Roc is the greenest petrol car

 Published 5th June 2023
Driver Guides 

You may recall we recently told you about how well the new Dacia Spring EV had done in the Green NCAP tests. At a time when more and more people are taking note of the environmental impact of their choices these tests are likely to become more important. It's not just electric vehicles that are submitted to the testing process either. That's how we know the Volkswagen T-Roc has achieved the highest rating of all the petrol and diesel cars tested to date.

Green NCAP is an independent initiative aimed at promoting the development of cars that are clean and efficient. It's basically trying to do the same for the environmental impact of a car as the regular NCAP tests have done to improve vehicle safety.

Pollution from transportation is one of the main factors that contributes to poor air quality, especially in our towns and cities where all the pollution sits around at head height waiting for us to breathe it in. Air quality problems are known to cause many health problems so the need to reduce the pollutants emitted by road vehicles has never been greater. The Green NCAP test awards a score based on a car's ability to minimise the emission of its own pollutants while maximising energy efficiency under real-world conditions.

Now Green NCAP has recently announced the ratings for six more cars, and as we said at the top, the Volkswagen T-Roc achieved the Highest Clean Air Index of all petrol and diesel cars that Green NCAP has assessed to date.

The VW T-Roc tested is a compact SUV and there are a lot of those on the road. If you're going to join the club and lease yourself a compact SUV it stands to reason you'd want to choose the most efficient one.

Green NCAP tested the 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol version, and despite the fact petrol engines generally emit higher levels of CO2 the Volkswagen T-Roc impressed with a score of 7.7 out of 10. This is largely down to the way the car manages those pollutants and keeps them out of the air. The only downside is the relatively high fuel consumption which means the T-Roc misses a 3-star rating and finishes with an Average Score of 49% and 2½ Green Stars. Easily the most impressive petrol car to be given a rating so far.

Alongside the T-Roc, Green NCAP also tested a few other popular choices in the SUV market.

The new Nissan Ariya, the Renault Austral, and Volvo XC40 also underwent the rigorous testing regime.

The Ariya represents the next generation of Nissan's electric cars. The big battery enables the car to drive more than 300 miles, although real world tests show the range decreases to around 200 miles in cold weather conditions and on the motorway. Green NCAP is encouraging manufacturers to ensure as much of the electricity stored in the batteries as possible is actually available to use. In this regard, the Nissan Ariya manages to deliver 91.6% efficiency, earning it an overall score of 96% and 5 green stars.

The Renault Austral E-Tech Hybrid also performed quite well. The 400v hybrid system increases energy efficiency and noticeably reduces fuel consumption at slower speeds. Emissions are also well controlled. Due to its impressive fuel consumption figures, the Austral scores an overall 52% and receives a 3 Green Star rating.

The Volvo XC40 is also a hybrid SUV but unfortunately it didn't fare quite so well in the tests. The 2-litre turbo petrol engine emits significantly more greenhouse gases than the others, resulting in an emissions score of only 2.3 out of 10 points. The mild-hybrid system does help, but not enough for the XC40 to achieve more than 4 points in the Energy Efficiency Index. With an Average Score of 41%, the Volvo XC40 B3 receives 2½ Green Stars.

“The impressive results of the Volkswagen T-Roc prove that the output of pollutant emissions can be effectively minimised even in conventional cars,” commented Dr. Aleksandar Damyanov, Green NCAP's Technical Manager. “Overall, the results of the Nissan Ariya, the Renault Austral and the Volkswagen T-Roc set an example of technological progress across the board that works in the interest of both consumers and the environment.”

So, if you're looking to lease yourself the most efficient car you can find, it's definitely going to be worth keeping an eye on the Green NCAP results from now on.

View our latest blog posts