Petrol: How UK's unleaded change impacted the country's health
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Experts at the RAC have warned those who own vehicles incompatible with the new petrol will need to continue to use E5. However, E5 fuel will become the premium super grade petrol when E10 is made the standard which could see costs dramatically rise.
RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams has warned super grade petrol will be “more expensive” than regular fuel in a blow to motorists.
He has warned super grade fuel is currently “over 13p” more expensive meaning costs will rise for owners of many classic and historic vehicle owners.
He has also claimed E5 fuel “may be harder to find” in some rural areas where two tyres of fuel are not sold in petrol stations.
This could drive up the price in some areas where demand may outstrip the supply levels available.
Mr Williams said: “The switch to E10 petrol is clearly good news for the environment and will not affect the vast majority of the UK’s 33m drivers although some may see the number of miles they get from a tank go down as research suggests E10 is potentially slightly less efficient.”
He added: “Those with no option but to continue using E5 will have to fork out quite a lot of extra money as super grade unleaded is currently 136p a litre which is over 13p more expensive than regular petrol.
“There’s also a danger that E5 premium grade petrol may be harder to find in some more rural locations.
“And while there will be no visible impact on prices at pumps, the reality is that the higher cost of bioethanol has already been included in the wholesale cost some time ago.
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“In fact, in the last 12 months, the price of a litre has gone up by more than a penny simply because of the biocontent being stepped up gradually by the industry to 10 percent.”
However, the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Introducing E10 guidance has revealed E5 will only be made the protection grade for up to five years.
They say this is the longest period the Government could impose the regulation before this would need to be reviewed.
The DfT said a further extension would be considered based on the situation and evidence at the time of the review.
However, this hints there is a possibility E5 may not be continued into the future which will be a major concern for thousands.
The RAC has previously warned as many as 600,000 owners of many classic and historic vehicles will not be able to use E10 fuel.
As a general rule. Cars registered before 2002 are not advised to use E10 in their vehicle due to a range of problems.
These problems include damage to a car’s seals, plastics and metals due to bioethanol’s corrosive nature.
The fuel could also be less stable meaning it can make incompatible cars harder to start.
The new greener fuel is estimated to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 750,000 tonnes per year.
This would be the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off the road and is a major part of meeting the Government’s emissions targets.
E10 fuel is already used in other countries such as France, Belgium and Germany.
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