For many company car drivers, topping their shopping list are three things:
✓ It must have a low CO2
✓ It must have a low BIK rate
✓ It’s got to be an SUV
The SUV market continues to boom
Since it’s explosion on the scene in 2007, the Nissan Qashqai is the biggest selling SUV in the UK. It is so popular it now ranks as number three in the top selling cars in UK with 26,127 registrations for 2018 so far.
With their high roofs and low floors, the modern day compact SUV offers a spacious ride that both drivers and passengers love. The elevated seating position also lends itself to improved access for many types of users. The big doors and convenient seating position means there’s no need to bend or stoop when getting in and out of an SUV.
It’s clear today’s SUV drivers aren’t interested in the four-wheel-drive or off-roading capabilities of a sports utility vehicle. They are however looking for comfort, style and economy.
SUVs with less than 119 gCO2/km
With a rise in road fund licences, fuel costs, uncertainty around WLTP and the ongoing fuel debate, the average company car driver wants to ensure they don’t get stung when it comes to company car tax. And the only way to do so, is to keep CO2 low.
We look at some of the hottest SUVs that emit less than 119 gCO2/km.
1. Jaguar I-PACE S
The brand-new Jaguar I-PACE is the only all-electric SUV to make our list and therefore offers zero CO2 emissions. Since the first glimpses of the concept version of I-PACE at the Los Angeles motor show in November 2016, the buzz around this car has been electric.
Just this week, Auto Express named the I-PACE as their Car of the Year for 2018. By definition, “any Auto Express Car of the Year must change the automotive industry for the better and force its competitors to re-evaluate – and that’s just what Jaguar’s I-PACE has done.” ¹
Using the latest technology, Jaguar have created something that no other manufacturer appears to have done yet. Offering a staggering 298 miles per charge, Jaguar’s first attempt at a fully electric vehicle shows huge promise for the future adoption of electric vehicles.
And if you love an SUV for space, the I-PACE has this in abundance. Offering class-leading amounts of interior space, the Jaguar I-PACE makes the most of the absent engine by positioning the front seats further forward, improving the driving position and offering more rear passenger legroom.
As the most expensive car on the list, with prices starting from £63,495 its seems that this level of premium SUV does come at a price!
2. BMW X2 sDrive18d SE
This newest member of the BMW X range is capitalising on the popularity of the compact SUV segment. Branded by BMW as a Sports Activity Coupé (SAC), they believe the X2 is a youthful and athletic car that offers great pulling-power and high-precision handling to rival any compact SUV.
The front grille is newly designed and the raised highlights give the X2 a sharp and focused appearance. With its athletic shoulder line and gently sloping roof line, the dynamic styling of the BMW X2 has a striking coupé-like character that should catch people’s attention. To make the X2 stand out, the BMW emblem also appears on the side, over the rear shoulder which pays homage to the iconic BMW coupés of the past.
The X2 is available in four trim levels including SE, Sport, M Sport and M Sport X. All featuring EfficientDynamics, this is BMW’s award-winning programme of technologies designed to reduce CO2 emissions and improve fuel economy, without compromising performance or driving dynamics.
However, it’s the SE model with 17” alloys keeps the CO2 low at just 119 gCO2/km.
3. Kia Niro ‘2’ 1.6 GDi 1.56kWh lithium-ion 139bhp 6-speed auto DCT
The Kia Niro plug-in hybrid offers something different to the booming SUV crossover market following its introduction last year. It’s competitive pricing, promising efficiency capabilities and the reliable Kia brand, makes the Kia Niro a fresh alternative to other, much pricier, plug-in hybrid equivalents.
The combined petrol and electric engines boasts a smooth, efficient ride and gives drivers the opportunity to travel up to 36 miles without any CO2 emissions at all. The 1.6 petrol engine can then extend your range and aims to deliver a combined fuel consumption of up to 217.3 MPG.
For company car drivers, the Niro should catch your eye in terms of BIK. Emitting just 29g/km of CO2 emissions overall, the Kia Niro PHEV has a company car tax banding of just 19%. As a company car, you could immediately see the huge BIK saving that could be made by choosing the Niro PHEV over a diesel powertrain Kia Sportage.
The Kia 7-year warranty, also includes the battery, giving drivers that added peace of mind
4. Toyota C-HR 1.8 WT-I Icon Hybrid 122hp Auto
Toyota are relative latecomers to the crossover market, but their C-HR certainly attracts attention.
The hybrid has been designed to reflect the agility of a dynamic hatchback, whilst adding the comforts of an SUV. The exterior creates a sporty aesthetic with it’s sharp, bold creases running around the body.
Moving inside the C-HR, you gain a real feel of luxury. The leather seats and steering wheel, distinctive blue inserts, and top quality materials used throughout adds great driving comfort.
In addition, the C-HR has a comprehensive range of safety features, so you can feel at ease on the road. Vehicle Stability Control, Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitor, and Lane Change Assist are just a few of the features fitted as standard.
As the most efficient on our list, the Hybrid powertrain boasts an average 74.3mpg and 87 gCO2/km.
5. Renault Captur 1.5 dCi Expression + 90
The Captur was an early entrant into the small crossover segment, and is still one of the best offerings.
The design is reflective of the Renault family with its striking new front design and classy subtle external chrome styling.
Similar to the Clio, but with additional SUV features, the Captur is more practical and spacious. With its own unique feel, the Captur has an enhanced upright SUV dash layout, additional storage slots and higher seats. With a vast amount of interior rationalisation options available, you can tailor the design to your preference.
The expression+ is the entry model and comes with a variety of standard features including CD, Bluetooth, AUX and USB. You can also relax knowing you won’t struggle to park in those tight spots with rear parking sensors.
Moreover, the Captur promises excellent efficiency due to fuel economy of 70.5mpg and just 95 gCO2/km. The Captur is a popular compact SUV crossover, and is a safe and reliable option for your fleet.
6. Nissan Qashqai 1.5 dCi Visia 110PS
A popular choice for many; introduced in 2007, the Qashqai is seen by many as the SUV trendsetter.
Released in 2014, the second-generation model holds true to its predecessor, but its appearance is more upmarket. The bold, sculpted lines and distinctive V-motion grille improve the aerodynamics, whilst the striking angular headlamps and twin chrome bars create a strong presence.
The revamped appearance is carried through to the interior. The graphite leather seats and cushioned kneepads offer all passengers great comfort, even on the longest of journeys.
Safety is paramount at Nissan, and the Qashqai has been rewarded the maximum five-star Euro NCAP rating. This adds to the already impressive award collection, as it has been named as the ‘Best Buy’ in the £15,000-£25,000 price point and overall winner in the category for three years running in the small SUV category.
Therefore, it’s not hard to see why the Qashqai makes it into our top 7 low emission SUV crossovers. With emissions from just 99 gCO2/km, and a five star NCAP rating, we expect it to continue to lead the way as the model that competitors aspire to recreate.
7. Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class GLA 200d SE DCT
Based on the A-Class family hatchback, the GLA rivals the Audi Q2 and BMW X1 in the compact premium crossover class.
The GLA was designed with agility and performance in mind. The new-look front bumper and radiator grill is reminiscent of the A-Class. Although the GLA is over 70mm lower than its closest competition, the boot capacity offers impressive space.
The ARTICO leather upholstery continues its premium image on the inside and the three-spoke nappa leather trimmed steering wheel only adds more luxury to the interior design.
To help make your driving experience as relaxing as possible, the GLA has an array of clever technology. Pre-Safe is standard on all GLA models, allowing you to benefit from Attention Assist, Active Break Assist, and Collision Prevention Assist. As a result of Mercedes’ commitment to safety, the GLA has also been awarded a five-star Euro NCAP rating.
The 200d SE DCT is the most efficient GLA model, emitting just 108 gCO2/km, and an average 67mpg, which results in an indicative fuel cost of 8.2p/mile. The strong efficiency and premium image make the GLA a good option as a company car.
8. Audi Q2 1.6 TDI SE 116PS S Tronic
Rivalling the GLA in our top 7 in the compact premium crossover class is the Audi Q2.
The first compact SUV from Audi has been designed with the looks of a coupe, the agility of a hatchback, but the presence of an SUV.
The eye-catching shoulder line, sloping roof and contrasting bumpers give the Q2 a striking appearance on the road. Inside, the Q2 borrows some features from the A3, such as the wraparound dashboard design, and climate control panel, but the expansive cabin and impressive headroom provide extra comfort.
The Q2 comes with a portfolio of safety technology that can help you to feel safe on the road. As standard on the Q2, is the pre-sense safety kit featuring Autonomous Emergency Braking, so not only are you safe on the road, but pedestrians are too.
Finally, the 1.6 TDI has the best fuel efficiency in the Q2 range, emitting just 114 gCO2, and delivering 64.2mpg. Although it emits higher CO2 than its premium GLA rival, the Q2 offers great space, strong performance, and a very comfortable ride.
9. Mazda CX-3 1.5 SE-L Nav 105PS SKYACTIV-D 2Wd
To get on-board with the growing crossover market, Mazda introduced their CX-3 at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2014.
Unlike many cars you see rolling off the assembly line these days, the CX-3 has opted against bold creases on the body for a more smooth and neat finish.
This neat and classy style is continued in the interior with the use of premium, hand-crafted materials. With comfort in mind, the driver-centric cockpit has been ergonomically designed around the driver.
Moreover, Mazda have developed an excellent reputation for reliability, as they consistently rank above the likes of Audi and Mercedes-Benz in the Driver Power satisfaction surveys. The CX-3 certainly reinforces that reputation, with a wide range of safety technology such as Hill Hold Assist, Smart City Brake Support, and Lane Departure Warning System.
Awarded the ‘Best Compact SUV’ by Fleet News in the 2016 Fleet News Awards, the CX-3 is a solid all-rounder in the crossover segment. Therefore, with its competitive pricing, and emissions of just 105 gCO2, you can’t ignore the CX-3.
10. Vauxhall Mokka X 1.6 CDTi Design Nav 110PS ecoFLEX FwD Start/Stop
Launched in 2012, the Mokka has consistently been one of the best sellers in its class.
Vauxhall recently gave the Mokka a face-lift, tweaking the front grille and rear, but the biggest change comes in the interior. The new dashboard design has been de-cluttered and replaced with a sleek and stylish central console. Benefit from Apple Car Play and play music straight from your smartphone using the 8.0” touchscreen display.
The Mokka ranks very impressively when it comes to low taxation and fuel savings. The ecoFlex 1.6CDTi emits a small 103 gCO2/km, and has an impressive 72.4mpg average. The Mokka is also very competitive on price. We can see why it has been a best seller since its introduction.
¹ Source: autoexpress.co.uk
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