Hyundai IONIQ Electric Becomes ACEEE’s Greenest Vehicle In U.S.

1 month ago by Steven Loveday 24

Hyundai IONIQ Electric

Hyundai IONIQ Electric

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) presents an annual Greenest list, along with an award for the Greenest vehicle. The Hyundai Ioniq Electric not only took home the award this year, but it is also the best scoring vehicle in the history of the ACEEE list. And it’s a bargain in the electric car segment at 124 miles of all-electric range for just $29,500.

A Look Inside the Hyundai IONIQ Electric

A Look Inside the Hyundai IONIQ Electric’s cargo area

The scores are tabulated by combining a vehicle’s tailpipe emissions, with the emissions resulting from the vehicle’s manufacturing process, and factors related to how its fuel source(s) are produced and delivered. The overall figure is referred to as an Environmental Damage Index (EDX).

So, an all-electric car (ex. Tesla) may actually not always score as well, if its build causes excess pollution, and it requires a greater abundance of electricity, which is produced by sources that emit carbon. Likewise, a smaller, economical and fuel-efficient ICE vehicle (ex. Toyota Prius Eco or C) may score decent due to minimal manufacturing costs and less use of gas.

The IONIQ electric is a game changer, however, because it is the first “larger” vehicle to succeed in the last ten years, and did so well that it was the overall winner. Only compact and subcompact cars generally make the list. The BMW i3 (which is considered a compact car) was a close second to the Hyundai. In the 4 through 7 spots were the Fiat 500e, the Nissan LEAF, the Chevrolet Bolt, and the Kia Soul Electric, respectively. The Prius Prime came in 8th and the Ford Focus Electric, number 10.

A rare ACEE win for a “larger” vehicle – Hyundai IONIQ Electric interior

Surprisingly, this is only the second year that plug-in hybrid and battery-electric vehicles dominated the Greenest list. Eric Junga, transportation research analyst at ACEEE said:

Hyundai IONIQ Electric (in Marina Blue)

“For the second year in a row, plug-in electric vehicles—all-electrics and plug-in hybrids–dominate the Greenest List, proving that these vehicles are really coming into their own. Even the all-electrics are associated with significant emissions, however, arising from vehicle production and the electricity used for charging. It’s notable that conventional hybrids continue to be environmentally competitive with the plug-ins, taking four of the Greenest slots.”

Source: Hybrid Cars

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24 responses to "Hyundai IONIQ Electric Becomes ACEEE’s Greenest Vehicle In U.S."

  1. Koenigsegg says:

    Took 1 second for me to disregard this vehicle entirely. That’s nice and all but its not appealing at all.

    What’s is so damn hard about designing a good looking car?

    1. AlphaEdge says:

      From a guy with a name of Koenigsegg.

      Yeah, not as pretty, but a bit cheaper.

    2. Peter S says:

      “Took 1 second for me to disregard this vehicle entirely. That’s nice and all but its not appealing at all.”

      –Have you seen the Chevy Bolt! (LOL)

      1. Ijmijon says:

        If they make it Too Good Looking with more Range Too many People will buy them and They won’t be able to keep up building them….lol

    3. Former FFE driver says:

      Agreed, I just can’t get excited about this car. I suspect it’s pretty soft in the handling department too. My Focus Electric handled the best out of the bunch of EVs and it looked good. I’m waiting on my next purchase for the Bolt to arrive in NY, E-golf too with digital dash, and I hope to see these cars in person. At 6’7″ I might not fit.

      1. Bjorn says:

        Drove it last week. Actually the handling is firm and trust-inducing, also nice and torquey feel. Hold judgement till you try it! 😉

  2. Texas FFE says:

    I thought you had to be sold in the US to be any kind of vehicle in the US. Guess not.

  3. mx says:

    “Even the all-electrics are associated with significant emissions, however, arising from vehicle production and the electricity used for charging. It’s notable that conventional hybrids continue to be environmentally competitive with the plug-ins, taking four of the Greenest slots.”

    Someone needs a math refresher.
    And stop using the US Grid mix from 1999.

    1. G2 says:

      That caught my eye as well; their credibility is in doubt.

  4. MTN Ranger says:

    It’s seems arbitrary that this is considered a sedan even though it has a hatchback. EPA considers the Bolt EV to be a small wagon. Passenger space is 95 CF vs 94 CF for the Bolt EV. Luggage space is 23 CF vs 17 CF for the Bolt EV. Combined is 118 CF and 111 CF, both fit in the midsize EPA category.

    Leaf is in the middle of them at 116 CF. Ford Focus EV is 105 CF, which falls in the compact. i3 is 99 CF, and thus a subcompact.

  5. Kevin C. says:

    Hey Steven,

    When will this be available in flyover country?

    1. unlucky says:

      Hyundai has said it won’t be available at all in flyover states. It’s a compliance car only. The hybrid will be nationwide. No word on the PHEV yet as it is many months away.

      1. WadeTyhon says:

        I think that Hyundai has said that the Hybrid and Electric models will be available in all 50 states… we will know soon enough if they do since its release is imminent. 🙂

        The PHEV model last I read was the one that would be (mostly) CARB only… but it can be special ordered in other states.

        From CleanTechnica:
        “As far as availability? The 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric will reportedly be available in all 50 US states. Though, there isn’t expected to be a nationwide marketing push for model.”

        insideEVs:
        “While the hybrid and BEV versions of IONIQ will be readily available at dealerships across the nation, the PHEV version will again be stocked at dealerships in only 10 states and available for special order in the remaining 40 states.”

        1. unlucky says:

          Okay, so I guess I’m 1 for 3. That’s batting .333. That’s good, right?

          1. WadeTyhon says:

            Good batting average!

            You’d fit in the fourth slot. That average would make you a decent cleanup hitter.

    2. Steven says:

      Probably before it’s available in Pennsylvania.

  6. AlphaEdge says:

    > “The IONIQ electric is a game changer”

    I don’t fully understand this. A fail to see that being a bit better than the competition in a certain metric, makes it a game changer.

    1. WadeTyhon says:

      I agree it’s not a game changer at all, though it looks like a very good EV. I think the article was just referring to it as a game changer for this particular award. In the past the award leaned heavily toward small sized standard hybrids.

      “The IONIQ electric is a game changer, however, because it is the first “larger” vehicle to succeed in the last ten years, and did so well that it was the overall winner.”

      Although looking more broadly at the Ioniq, offering PHEV, traditional Hybrid, and EV options for the same model is still pretty unique. It’s nice to have options. This might be a trend going forward? …or it might not be. 🙂 Dunno.

      1. I wonder what an All Electric version of the Prius Prime would give for Range?

        1. WadeTyhon says:

          It would be nice if Toyota could work it into their plans so we can find out!

          With 60 kWH of batteries in a Prius Prime EV it would end up being several hundred lbs heavier than a Bolt. But it’s low drag design should perform better on the highway I would think?

          I would like to see what kind of range it could manage.

  7. unlucky says:

    That’s great. I can’t wait for it to get here. And I can’t wait for other companies to respond by improving their offerings.

    Above the crowd? Yes. I’d recommend anyone looking at a short range EV put this at the top of their list. But I can’t see how it is a game changer though.

  8. Stimpy says:

    I’m very skeptical this is more eco friendly than the i3 considering the great lengths BMW went to in making the manufacturing process sustainable. What has Hyundai done exactly on the manufacturing side that’s different than any of their other cars?

    1. David S. says:

      The Ioniq wins because of its higher efficiency. Not sure how they compare on the manufacturing impact. The Ioniq is heavier, but its battery has a smaller capacity.

    2. unlucky says:

      BMW tells you they are the most sustainable. That’s the job of marketing, to say they are the best.

      But that doesn’t mean it is so. The CFRP and FRP that makes up so much of the i3 cannot be recycled well. To reuse the material you have to grind it up and make a less strong, less valuable material out of it. Whereas the metals used in other cars can be melted and reused at the same strengths over and over. You can make a new car out of (a lot of) the old car. But not with the i3.

      BMW brags about their choice of natural fibers to glue on their plastics but there’s a lot more to the whole green story than that.

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