Greenest Estate Cars - Efficiency and Practicality mixed

  • We look at what estate cars mix practicality and efficiency
  • Mainly diesels, but one petrol choice with prices from £14,490
  • A mixture of eco-tech means all emit 112g/km or less

You want a green car, but you can’t afford to let your eco-friendly aspirations get in the way of the rest of your life. There’s your busy social calendar to take into account and the family is only growing one way – at least until those pesky kids finally fly the nest – while just occasionally the other half wants you to take the rubbish to the local refuse centre.

An estate car fits the bill perfectly, but mixing capacity and flexibility with efficiency and economy can be trickier than stuffing your latest IKEA purchase into the family hatchback. We’ve made choosing the ideal estate car that looks after the environment and your flatpack easier with our list of the best, below.

BMW 320 ED Touring

BMW 3 Series Touring

BMW has become something of a by-word for efficiency of late, and its new i3 and i8 models are taking all the headlines. However the firm’s 320d Touring Efficient Dynamics (ED) isn’t just a decent load lugger with low emissions and high economy, but great to drive too. The chassis is beautifully balanced, the steering well weighted and the smaller wheels and non run-flat tyres make the ride even more supple.  

Price: £29,710

Emissions: 112g/km

Economy: 78mpg

Luggage Capacity: 495/1,500-litres


Ford Focus Edge ECOnetic Estate

Ford Focus Estate

The Focus is a family car best seller and the estate model adds to its allure with extra capacity, the boot able to accommodate up to 1,502-litres with the seats folded down. Performance isn’t particularly exciting, but the 1.6-litre diesel engine does mean CO2 emissions are only 88g/km, which is a figure its class rivals just can’t come close to matching.  

Price: £19,245

Emissions: 88g/km

Economy: 83mpg

Luggage Capacity: 476/1,502-litres


MINI Clubman One D

MINI Clubman

Okay, we’ll concede the MINI Clubman isn’t really an estate, as evidenced by its meagre 260-litre luggage capacity, but as far as MINI is concerned if you want a load-lugger this is your only choice. The good news is the Clubman’s diesel engine also offers strong economy (near 75mpg) while it'll stand out at the local dump thanks to the vast range of personalisation options offered. 

Price: £15,610

Emissions: 103g/km

Economy: 74.3mpg

Luggage Capacity: 260/930-litres


Renault Megane Sport Tourer Expression+ dCi 90

Renault Megane Sport Tourer

As pretty as estate cars come the Megane Sport Tourer is also one of the most practical. On top of a boot that can hold 524-litres of luggage, the front passenger chair can fold flat allowing for awkwardly shaped or longer items to be carried with ease. Efficiency’s taken care of by Stop/start technology which improves economy from 67mpg to 80mpg and CO2 emissions from 109g/km to 90g/km over the normal versions.

Price: £20,245

Emissions: 90g/km

Economy: 80.7mpg

Luggage Capacity: 524/1,600-litres


Skoda Fabia Greenline II Estate

Skoda Fabia Greenline estate

You’d expect a supermini to be frugal and clean, but even we're impresed with the Fabia Greenline II's 88g/km CO2 emissions and 83mpg combined economy. Add to that masses of load space - more so than many 'bigger' rivals - and there's not much to dislike. It's cheap too, and it's the only car on the list to feature a petrol engine rather than a diesel, even if it does make do with only three-cylinders.

Price: £14,490

Emissions: 88g/km

Economy: 83mpg

Luggage Capacity: 505/1,485-litres


Skoda Octavia 1.6 TDI Estate

Skoda Octavia estate

Yes it's anothrer Skoda but it's here with good reason; with the seats in place it'll hold 610-litres of luggage and emits only 99g/km. The former figure is expandable to 1,740-litres (the largest on offer here) and economy from the 1.6-litre diesel is an impressive 74mpg. As if that wasn;t enough the Octavia is comfortable, well-equipped, spacious, well built and incredibly good value too.

Price: £18,840

Emissions: 99g/km

Economy: 74mpg

Luggage Capacity: 610/1,740-litres


Vauxhall Astra 1.7 CDTI ES Sports Tourer

Vauxhall Astra estate

Almost as popular as the Ford Focus the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer makes up for coming second place in the sales charts by being more practical. A larger space with the seats up or down, no wheelarch intrusions, a flat floor and almost level load lip make it a consumate load-lugger. It trails the Ford for efficiency, but the 104g/km and 70mpg headline figures still impress.

Price: £20,395

Emissions: 104g/km

Economy: 70mpg

Luggage Capacity: 500/1,550-litres


Volvo V60 D4

Volvo V60 D4

We couldn’t do an estate cars feature without including a Volvo, and until now the greenest V60 was the D2 with CO2 emissions of 108g/km. The good news is the firm has just released an all new diesel engine which inspite of it's impressive 179bhp output emits only 102g/km. If that's not good enough there's also the 48g/km V60 Plug-in Hybrid instead.   

Price: £29,395

Emissions: 102g/km

Economy: 74mpg

Luggage Capacity: 430/1,241-litres