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Green cars on the rise

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18:32 CEST+02:00
One in ten cars sold in Sweden in September uses alternative fuel, new figures show.

Statistics from carmakers and importers' organisation Bil Sweden show that 2,402 such cars were sold in Sweden last month, making it the best month for “green” car sales ever recorded.

Large financial advantages available to those who buy environmentally-friendly cars is probably behind the figure, thinks Ulf Perbo, Bil Sweden's deputy CEO.

“Green cars are exempt from congestion charging, can park free in many towns and are taxed at a lower rate,” he says.

“It is economical to drive green cars these days, particularly if it's a company car.”

“Another reason is that the model range has started to broaden. Volvo is launching an ethanol car next year.”

A further reason, according to Perbo, is that consumers are becoming more environmentally aware. From the beginning of next year, all large gas stations will be obliged to sell at least one alternative fuel – and many have already started selling greener fuels.

“You can fill your car with ethanol in more and more towns,” Perbo says. Bil Sweden estimates that sales of green cars will double every year.

“Last year there were 7,000 environmentally-friendly cars sold. We predict that this will rise to 12,000 this year, and 20,000 next year.”

Most of the green cars sold last month were the new ethanol-fueled Saab 9-5 Bio Power. The General Motors-owned Swedish carmaker sold 1,326 of the cars in September. The Ford Focus Flexifuel, also etahnol-powered, sold 603 models last moth, and the hybrid Toyota Prius sold 153. Volvo's V70 Bi-Fuel sold 146.

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