After thinking about the kind of acceleration you’d like from a car, you need to consider what fuel type best meets your needs. From a financial perspective, new fuel-saving features mean that there’s less and less difference between petrol and diesel cars. While a diesel car is more cost-effective in terms of running costs, city dwellers who travel over short distances are better off opting for the cheaper petrol option.
Diesel-powered cars tend to be more expensive to fuel and service than petrol vehicles, but this ‘diesel premium’ reduces as cars get larger in size. While CO2 emissions are higher in petrol cars than diesel, they produce less other dangerous emissions. Then there’s hybrid cars, which generally consume less fuel and emit less CO2 than comparable petrol or diesel vehicles, using a conventional engine, an electric motor and a battery.
If you plan to use your car for shorter commutes, an electric car may be the best choice. Unlike hybrids, these cars get all of their power from electrical sources and don’t rely on a conventional engine. Electricity is a far cheaper fuel in comparison to petrol or diesel, and is better for the environment as it doesn’t produce tailpipe emissions. However, electric cars are relatively limited by range, speed and recharge time.
Most manufacturers offer a choice of petrol, diesel, hybrid and electric engines across each range. Ultimately, which fuel type and vehicle you choose will be determined by the type of travel you intend to do.