Every year for two decades, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy releases a list of the greenest vehicles and the meanest. Green vehicles require fewer resources and pollute less during manufacturing, fuel production, and tailpipe emissions. Mean vehicles suck up fuel and pollute like your cigar-smoking uncle after eating bean burritos.

There are more electrified vehicles available now than ever before, so it’s no surprise that for the third year in a row, all of the greenest vehicles have an electric motor. None of them use an internal combustion engine on its own.

Without further ado, the winners!

Greenest Vehicles

  1. Hyundai Ioniq Electric
  2. Smart ForTwo Electric Drive
  3. BMW i3 BEV
  4. Tesla Model 3 (long range)
  5. Kia Soul Electric
  6. Chevy Bolt
  7. Hyundai Ioniq Blue
  8. Toyota Prius Eco
  9. Ford Focus EV
  10. Kia Niro PHEV
  11. Honda Clarity PHEV
  12. Chevy Volt

ACEEE recognizes that some of these are only available in certain markets. And some of them may not end up in your garage for years, even if you’ve put down your $1,000 deposit already. (*cough* Tesla *cough*). So they’ve thoughtfully provided an additional list of “greener choices” that are easier to find nationally while still being pretty dang green.

Greener Choices

  1. Toyota Camry Hybrid
  2. Kia Niro
  3. Toyota Prius C
  4. Ford C-Max Hybrid
  5. Toyota Yaris iA
  6. Nissan Rogue Hybrid
  7. Honda CR-V
  8. Mercedes-Benz GLA250
  9. Lexus RX 450h
  10. Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon Diesel
  11. Ford F150 Base Payload
  12. Chrysler Pacifica

These greener choices have a lot more variety. There are pickup trucks on this list! Also SUVs and wagons! So not only are they probably easier to find than the greenest vehicles, they might fit more needs for more families.

The bad guys this year are big trucks and SUVs. Try to rein in your shock. The top three meanest vehicles are just performance variants of the same luxury SUV. Some of them, though, are kind of popular, so if these were on your shopping list, you might want to reconsider.

Meanest Vehicles

  1. Mercedes-Benz G550
  2. Mercedes-Benz AMG G65
  3. Mercedes-Benz AMG G63
  4. Jeep Grand Cherokee TrackHawk
  5. Toyota Sequoia
  6. Toyota Tundra
  7. RAM 1500
  8. Lexus LX 570
  9. Nissan Armada
  10. Mercedes-Benz AMG GLS63
  11. Toyota Land Cruiser Wagon
  12. Dodge Durango SRT

Is the Jeep Grand Cherokee TrackHawk crazy fun to drive? Oh, yeah. Is it fuel savvy? Oh, hell no. Also, do I personally covet the Mercedes G wagon in all its boxy glory? I do. (It gets 11 mpg! That’s astoundingly horrible.) I also recognize that these are terrible choices for living lightly on the earth, even if they do have their limited use cases.

We at Carsplaining are working on car reviews now, and we want to review the cars you want to shop and maybe buy. Hit us up on Twitter to let us know what questions you have about these newfangled, high-tech vehicles. We’ll give you whatever information we have—and it’s a lot.—KHG


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