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On the road with the carToday there are

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Environmentally friendly cars in all vehicle categories, with some equipped with electric motors and others powered by gas (biogas) or biofuel. One can also share the cost of a ride. Search for a passenger or driver on the Internet. Or else you can join the Swiss car sharing company

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Mobility on, where you can reserve a car around the clock.

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Global impact

The automotive industry has been trying very hard to get more and more power and safety. But over the last 20 years, the various models have become on average 30% heavier. Today's cars are bigger, more massive and more motorized. With the result that efforts to develop more fuel-efficient engines have not reduced fuel consumption overall. 100 kg more weight means an additional 0.5 liters of gasoline per 100 km. But fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are closely 1 liter of gasoline produces 2.3 kg of CO2, while 1 liter of diesel produces 2.6 kg.


A small car costs about CHF 500.- per month, with a large car this sum is quickly doubled. To reduce fuel consumption, it is recommended to check the tire pressure regularly and to remove all unnecessary ballast from the car (additional weight). Unnecessary ski racks and roof boxes should be removed (at 120 km/h, these elements increase fuel consumption by 15%). Further savings can be made by using the Eco-Drive driving technique, which involves shifting quickly into high gears (savings of up to 15%)

Duration of the distances traveled

If you want to objectively compare the time it takes to cover a distance by car or by public transport, you should cover it several times a week with a stopwatch in your hand and find an average value. Experience has shown that people tend to overestimate the time spent in a public transport vehicle (because they have nothing to do) and tend to underestimate the time spent at the wheel (because they are busy driving). In these comparisons, one also tends to "forget" the time needed to find a parking space.

Impact on health

Traffic accidents cause around 240 fatalities and 4000 serious injuries in Switzerland every year. The heavy cars with four-wheel drive (SUV) are particularly dangerous: if a pedestrian is hit, the probability of death is two to three times higher than with a normal car. Lungs and the respiratory tract-. Triggers cardiovascular diseases. Air pollution is responsible for almost 3300 premature deaths in our country every year, mainly due to PM10.

Hybrid cars ?

In a hybrid vehicle, the internal combustion engine and fuel tank are supplemented by an electric motor, a large battery and a generator. The latter is used to recharge the battery and works with the help of the internal combustion engine or by recycling the energy generated by the car when it goes downhill or brakes. The electric motor runs either independently (starting, low speed) or together with the combustion engine (more power when overtaking). At steady driving speed the electric motor is at rest. A hybrid car consumes about 30% less fuel than a normal car of the same weight. Some models can also recharge their battery via a power outlet. The classic electric car has only an electric motor. Charges the batteries through a power outlet.

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Energy consumption

Of course, weight is the most important factor in the fuel consumption of a car. But even within each vehicle category, there are models that consume less than others. The mandatory for new cars energy label, indicates its energy efficiency (it also takes into account the weight of the car and not only the consumption). In certain cantons, tax breaks are granted for particularly clean cars. It is worthwhile to study the lists for comparison of all vehicles available on the market.


One car engine at 4000 rpm makes as much noise as about 30 engines at 2000 rpm. However, in addition to engine noise, air resistance and the rubbing of tires on the asphalt also contribute to the noise produced by a car. From approx. 50 km/h the noise of the tires dominates. There are "green" cars on the market tires, whose rolling resistance is about 30% lower. In this way, fuel consumption can also be reduced by 5%.

Air conditioning

Driving through the city in summer at 30°C with the air conditioning on increases fuel consumption by about 15 to 30%. On the highway, the additional consumption due to cooling still accounts for 0.3 to 1 liter per 100 km. Even at an outside temperature of 13°C, switching on the air conditioning in the city burns 8% more fuel A car model in light color heats up less quickly in the sun than the same model in dark color.

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