What Car? has named the BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics Auto as its Green Car of the Year 2012. The same car also picked up the executive car award, while the BMW 116d has won the small family car award.
What Car? editor-in-chief Chas Hallett said: 'The BMW 320d is a truly remarkable car that delivers 56mpg in the real world, while company car users will be taxed on its low emissions of just 110g/km of CO2. BMW has created a car that delivers great environmental credentials without compromise, which is what consumers really want.'
For the first time the What Car? Green Awards, presented in association with EDF Energy, include the findings of the What Car? True MPG programme, which offers real-world fuel economy and emissions data gathered by What Car? engineers.
The British-built Mini Cooper D is What Car?'s best green fun car for the second year. Judges said the Mini proves it is possible to minimise impact on the planet and still have fun.
For the second year running, the Ford Mondeo is the best green family car, while the new seven-seat Toyota Prius+ is named best green MPV.
SUVs are a popular choice with families who want practicality and 4x4 style, and the best green car in this segment is Mazda CX-5 2.2D Skyactiv-D 150 SE-L.
The Skoda Citigo is this years top green supermini. The judging panel praised its green statistics as well as its superb ride, refinement and roomy and classy interior.
This year's best alternative-fuel car is the Chevrolet Volt, a range-extender that can do 235.4mpg and emit just 27g/km of CO2.
Angus Wilby, Head of Energy Service at EDF Energy, said: 'We are delighted to see the BMW 320d ED crowned overall winner this year and thrilled to see so many excellent low carbon vehicles coming to market essential if we are to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 80% before 2050.
The What Car? judging team considers not only CO2 output, because cars emit a whole concoction of polluting gases including nitrous oxides and particulates. The judges also evaluated whole-life costs, driveability and reliability.
What Car? True MPG
The big difference between our True MPG fuel economy tests and the Government tests quoted by manufacturers is that ours are done on the road rather than in a laboratory.
In every test we do, in order to account for variances in traffic volume, sensors attached to the car's electronic brain record road speed, exhaust manifold pressure and throttle position. Other equipment measures the altitude, humidity and air pressure.