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9th March 2007, 10:55 PM
Expert testing of ethanol blended fuels

The Australian Government has released the results of expert testing of vehicles using ethanol blended fuels. In response to the Biofuels Taskforce report to the Prime Minister in 2005, the Australian Government has funded vehicle testing to validate information for Australian consumers about the suitability of ethanol blend fuel for cars.

Orbital Australia was commissioned to conduct the testing programme, which focused on vehicles listed by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) as unsuitable for use with ethanol blend fuel.

Using the most recent motor vehicle census (March 2006) and information from the FCAI, the Orbital study estimates that about 7.6 million (60 per cent) of petrol vehicles are suitable for use with E10.

The FCAI confirms that all new Australian cars are suitable for E10 ethanol blended fuel and that the vast majority of new imported car models sold in Australia today are also compatible with E5 or E10 ethanol blended fuels.

The Australian Government is committed to achieving production of at least 350 ML of biofuels (including ethanol) in Australia by 2010. Information about the suitability of many vehicles for use with ethanol blended fuel is available from the FCAI, along with manufacturer contact details at Index | Ethanol | FCAI (http://www.fcai.com.au/ethanol).

The full report of Orbital study is available from:

Australian Government Department of the Environment and Water Resources (Department of the Environment and Heritage) Home Page (http://www.environment.gov.au)