Monday, December 3, 2007

GM Responds to USA Today on E85

I was really surprised to see this. GM officially defending ethanol as an extension of their product line.
It looks like the engineers over at GM are looking differently at fuel. In fact on the GM website there is a blog post where a GM official representative points to Brazil as a model for potential ethanol availability.
GM came out in response to a USA Today report that E85 was inferior to all other motor fuels including gasoline. As reported in USA Today:

Graham's team calculated the individual and societal costs and benefits of conventional gasoline vehicles, gasoline-electric hybrids, high-tech diesels and flex-fuel vehicles burning E85 full time. Conclusion: Unless gasoline prices, averaging $3.10 a gallon now, rise above $4 and average $3.50 or more the next few years, or ethanol prices drop a lot, diesel's the best overall solution; E85's the worst.
On Firday, GM stood by the premise of ethanol as a viable substitute/blend-stock to petroleum gasoline. What excites me is the fact that GM is siding behind ethanol as a long term fuel. This is the first I have ever seen a major manufacturer actual come to defense of a biofuel beyond making PR laps whenever oil prices rise.
I saw it first at and followed it over to GM's own page.

“We believe ethanol as a renewable fuel is the best near-term alternative to oil as a transportation fuel and replacing gasoline with ethanol positively contributes to lowering greenhouse gas emissions,” said GM Chief Economist Mustafa Mohatarem in the statement. “You cannot take a snapshot in time and define a mature market.”

This snapshot being a reference to where ethanol can go as a fuel technology. Where the "next generation" ethanol technologies will drive future energy prices (downward) and the performance of vehicle engines able to use the higher octane cleaner fuel (upward).

And again another excerpt from Reuters on the same subject:

"By 2012, it will be easier to say which GM vehicles are not E85-capable than to list which ones are FlexFuel," said Beth Lowery, GM vice president of Environment, Energy and Safety Policy. "And we are just as committed to helping build the infrastructure for E85."

For more on GM's E85 Flex Fuel Vehcile support check out their official E85 website: Live Green Go Yellow.

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