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If you burn a litre of diesel this will produce 2.6391 kgs of carbon dioxide. Petrol has a lower carbon content and so produces 2.3035 kgs of CO2. The precise figures depend on the quality of the fuel. Since fuel weighs less than a kilogram per litre, it is interesting to see how the weight of emissions is multiplied by the addition of oxygen. The tables below show how the official test figures for CO2 emissions and combined MPG can be equated to see how individual vehicles perform in terms of CO2 per litre. Some cars appear to do better than the standard chemistry would suggest, whereas others do worse. So these figures show how inaccurate the testing mechanism can be, and how different engines skew the results. The official tests measure exhaust gases only and then calculate the fuel consumption.


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Top 10 CO2/litre petrol cars

 
Make Model Derivative CO2 (kg)/litre CO2 (gpkm) Litre per 100km MPG (combined) List price
Peugeot 208 3 Door 1.6 THP XY 156 2.11 135 6.41 44.1 £17,700
MINI Paceman 1.6i Cooper S 2.14 143 6.69 42.2 £22,365
MINI Paceman 1.6i Cooper S Auto 2.16 166 7.70 36.7 £23,655
BMW 2 Series Coupé M235i Auto 2.17 176 8.09 34.9 £35,805
BMW 2 Series Coupé 220i M Sport Auto 2.20 139 6.31 44.8 £28,930
Peugeot 308 CC 1.6 THP Allure Nav 156 2.22 160 7.21 39.2 £26,210
Peugeot 308 5 Door 1.6 THP Allure 156 2.22 129 5.80 48.7 £19,750
Morgan 4/4 1.6 2.23 143 6.41 44.1 £33,080
Ford Focus Estate 1.0T Titanium X Navigator EcoBoost 125PS 2.24 114 5.10 55.4 £23,195
Citroen DS3 1.6i VTi 16V DStyle 120hp 2.24 132 5.90 47.9 £15,380
 

Bottom 10 CO2/litre petrol cars

 
Make Model Derivative CO2 (kg)/litre CO2 (gpkm) Litre per 100km MPG (combined) List price
Skoda Rapid Spaceback 1.2 Elegance TSI 105PS GreenTech 2.95 118 4.00 70.6 £16,890
Subaru Forester 2.0i XT CVT 2.85 197 6.91 40.9 £31,005
SsangYong Rexton CS 2.7 270 CS Auto 2.66 250 9.38 30.1 £21,144
SsangYong Rexton CS 2.7 270 CS 2.66 229 8.61 32.8 £19,944
Ford Grand C-MAX 1.6T Duratec Titanium Ecoboost 150PS Start/Stop 2.62 149 5.70 49.6 £22,250
Volvo V40 Cross Country 2.5 T5 245HP Lux Nav Geartronic 2.61 136 5.20 54.3 £34,140
MINI Paceman 1.6i Cooper S ALL4 2.57 157 6.10 46.3 £23,620
MINI Paceman 1.6i Cooper S ALL4 Auto 2.54 180 7.10 39.8 £24,930
Citroen C3 Picasso 1.6 VTi Exclusive 120hp 2.48 149 6.00 47.1 £17,015
Maserati GranTurismo 4.7 V8 Sport MC Shift 2.48 385 15.52 18.2 £94,140