What Does The New E10 Fuel Mean?
The New E10 Unleaded Petrol
The E in E10 stands for ethanol, which is an alcohol based fuel produced from the fermentation of plants. Unlike fossil fuels, such as unleaded petrol, ethanol is carbon-neutral as the carbon dioxide they absorb during growth is more than is produced during production and in the combustion of the fuel.
The number stands for the percentage of ethanol in the fuel, so E10 means there is a 10% ethanol. The UK has used E5 fuels for a while, but a few weeks ago E10 was introduced. E10 has been available across Europe in countries such as Germany for a few years now, so the change in the UK was only a matter of time. The UK government has introduced E10 unleaded petrol to reduce an estimated 750,000 tonnes per year of CO2 output from combustion engine vehicles. The introduction of E10 fuels is part of the government's target of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and to encourage the use of electric vehicles. Read our guide to 2021's best electric and hybrid cars.
The new E10 fuel has left some motorists questioning if their car is able to run on it or if there any side affects of doing so.
Am I Affected?
It is reported that 700,000 cars in the UK won't be able to use the new E10 petrol. Although the government predicts that many of these cars will soon be scrapped or are no longer on the roads in working condition. Some though are classic cars or cars of interest with both a financial and historical value and of course are loved by their owners. Some cars won't be able to run on the new E10 fuel as these cars use older and less durable components which can be harmed by the higher ethanol content such as the rubber, alloy and plastic parts.
However, all cars manufactured from 2011 are legally required to be able to run on the fuel, so if you car has an 11 plate or newer then your car should be compatible. There is a government published tool online to allow you to check your own car using the number plate.
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If you own one of the 700,000 cars that cannot use E10 fuel, there are still a few options.
Firstly, E5 fuel is still available which is compatible for many of the 700,000 cars which cannot use E10 fuels. E5 is available in premium and super unleaded fuel.
Secondly, maybe now would be the perfect time to upgrade to a newer, more reliable and more efficient vehicle such as an electric car. Electric cars feature an electric motor and batteries in which electricity is stored. They require charging which can be done conveniently at home, meaning you'll never need to visit a petrol station again. There are a range of electric cars to choose from to suit all budgets and requirements from the smart EQ fortwo and MINI Electric to the Audi E-tron GT and Porsche Taycan. Read our guides to electric cars to find out more.
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