Many car manufacturers are taking climate change concerns very seriously. Toyota is introducing more efficient work practices and new technologies, developing alternative engine systems, reducing waste and improving recycling. These efforts are all independently assessed and documented in the annual sustainability report.
Even if the environment is not a top of mind issue for you, it's worth taking sustainability into account when you buy. Reducing emissions is not only kinder to the environment, it can also be kinder to your wallet, as the more fuel-efficient the car, the less it will cost you at the petrol pump.
Modern engine technologies, such as Dual Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence, which helps improve performance and helps reduce fuel consumption, along with stronger, lighter frames and improved aerodynamics, all have a positive effect on performance. Together, they enable cars to extract ever more from each litre of petrol, while helping to lower emissions.
So it's a good idea to research manufacturers' websites to check the fuel-efficiency of the models you're interested in, as well as their performance on CO2 emissions.
Another environmentally responsible development to consider is Hybrid technology. This powers cars by combining an electric motor with an engine run on petrol or other fuel. Hybrids are highly fuel-efficient and in certain situations, such as stopped at the lights or moving in stop start traffic, some models effectively create zero emissions[G1] and use no fuel at all. These include those powered by Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive® technology. The most up to date Hybrid cars offer exceptional fuel-efficiency, along with powerful performance that rivals similar-sized petrol engine cars.
So whether you care about the environmental impact of your vehicle, performance or your bank balance, sustainability is an important factor to consider.