Spanish carmaker SEAT has turned a corner in its push to be competitive in the green car sector: by introducing its lowest emitting car, ever.
The new SEAT Mii Ecofuel (pictured) will run on compressed natural gas (CNG) and is said to combine the fun driving dynamics of the Mii with remarkably low running costs: all while emitting a best-in-class figure of just 79g/km of CO2.
The model is actually the first CNG car ever to wear the SEAT badge and will debut at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. Its running costs are approximately half that of a Mii with a petrol engine as it can travel 100km for approximately £2.60.
At its heart is an innovative three-cylinder spark ignition engine that has a displacement of 999cc. With its CNG variant, the compact power unit can create 68PS at 6,200rpm while reaching a maximum torque of 90Nm at 3,000rpm. Yet despite being zippy and powerful it can achieve an average fuel consumption of just 2.9kg of CNG per 100km.
Though it has been engineered to run on CNG, it can also run on unleaded petrol. With a full CNG tank it can produce a range of 240miles: but the reserve petrol tank will extend this range by as much as 140miles – meaning total range is 380miles.
Its remarkable fuel economy figures are boosted by a host of fuel saving ecomotive technologies. These include a start/stop system and a brake energy recovery system. It also boasts a low kerb weight of 956kg without a driver and impressive aerodynamic characteristics.
According to James Muir, the president of SEAT S.A, the model is about making the most environmentally friendly technology more widely available.
“The new SEAT Mii Ecofuel now makes environmentally friendly CNG technology affordable for all,” he said. “Its attractive starting price and exceptionally low consumption and emissions figures make the Mii Ecofuel one of the most interesting and sensible choices available – even for high-mileage drivers.”
The model is set to enter the market at €12,050 in Germany: making it the cheapest CNG car in the country. However, there is unfortunate news for us here in the UK: so far, SEAT has no plans to introduce the models on these shores due to the lack of CNG infrastructure in place.
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