The 2016 Chicago Auto Show has been showing potential buyers and enthusiasts alike what the key players in eco-centric features are in the automotive sphere. The list that follows is a small sampling of some of the eco features that different brands have been showing audiences at this year’s show. This year, there are cars from many different aspects. The Subaru Impreza is a practical entry level vehicle with style, the Toyota Prius is traditionally what people think of as an eco-friendly vehicle and the Acura NSX shows that supercars can be friendly with the environment, too.

impreza1 Eco Features From The 2016 Chicago Auto Show
Photo by Robert Mathius

Subaru Impreza

The Impreza comes standard with all-wheel drive. The capability to send power to all four wheels is great for drivers who may have treacherous Chicago snow-filled roads to cope with on morning commutes. However, to be eco conscious, the Impreza decides when the driver actually needs the additional help. In dry conditions, the all-wheel drive does not trigger, which helps by increasing fuel economy. In the situations where it is necessary to trigger to help drivers stay in control or get out of a snow bank, the wheels sense that they need power and trigger all-wheel drive. Afterwards, the all-wheel drive disengages to bring fuel economy back to normal. The Subaru Impreza impresses drivers by offering all-wheel drive standard on a vehicle that starts at only $18,295. 

hybridtoyota Eco Features From The 2016 Chicago Auto Show
Photo by Robert Mathius

Toyota Prius

The Toyota Prius is the poster child for what consumers first think of when they hear the words “eco friendly.” This year, the accolades keep coming. The Prius has one of the best fuel ratings of any car in the country. The four door sedan offers 54 miles per gallon in the city. As a hybrid, the Prius uses a combination of power from a traditional gasoline motor plus the power from an electric motor. At low speeds, only the electric motor is needed, which improves MPG ratings and makes for a silent ride. In addition to this, the Prius saves gas by offering automatic grille shutter, which closes slots on the front of the vehicle for added aerodynamic poise. More aerodynamic smoothness leads to more efficient use of power. The new redesigned Prius allows for owners to save gas and lower emissions while looking good doing it.

hybrid Eco Features From The 2016 Chicago Auto Show
Photo by Robert Mathius

Acura NSX

Who would think that a super-fast hypercar would have the environment in mind? The answer is a bit hazy, because the eco features on the NSX save the environment as a by-product of trying to increase speed and acceleration. A hybrid system as well, the NSX has a battery pack which will power two electric motors. When braking, the brakes can send power back to the battery pack that otherwise would have been lost. This power, in turn, can then go back into making the car quicker and providing sharper electric steering with added power. The added electric power of the NSX adds an additional 100 horsepower to the already quick car.

Eco features like these and much more will be at the 2016 Chicago Auto Show exhibition at McCormick Place through Feb. 21.

Robert Mathius is a Chicago suburb native who currently lives in Tinley Park. He has a passion for the automotive industry in addition to journalism and works to blend his two passions in his writing. Additional automotive reporting by Robert can be found on Examiner.com.

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