E10 petrol described as giving the car ‘a drink of vodka’ after issues with new fuel

E10 biofuel: Department for Transport explains why it’s ‘better'

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E10 was launched onto forecourts last week and is said to be a new ‘greener’ form of petrol, as it contains a higher blend of bioethanol. It is blended with up to 10 percent renewable ethanol and made up of materials such as low-grade grains, sugars and waste wood, making it greener than existing E5 petrol.

The new petrol could cut transport CO2 emissions by 750,000 tonnes per year, which is the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off of UK roads.

Despite this, not everyone has been happy with its rollout as some have experienced issues with the petrol.

SulNOx Group, which specialises in providing responsible solutions towards decarbonisation of liquid hydrocarbon fuels, has criticised the new standard of petrol.

Dr Dan Clarke, Global Head of Science and Technology for SulNOx, said: “E10 contains more bio-ethanol, a kind of alcohol manufactured from plants, and it is this that could create a permanent hangover.

“For many motorists, E10 is a positive move towards decarbonisation, but its implementation may also lead to increased costs and reduced performance in some cars and cause more serious issues for a significant number of older, yet still serviceable, vehicles.

“The main problem is that the additional bio-ethanol content in E10 prefers to mix with water as opposed to petrol and where there is sufficient of both, it leaves the petrol and combines with the water to form a separate layer at the bottom of the fuel tank.”

Dr Clarke says the fuel line draws from this watery alcohol mixture which is pumped directly into the engine.

This increases the risk of damage and breakdowns, and he says he expects to see more cars going into “limp home mode” as a result.

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The RAC has estimated that around 630,000 cars are not compatible with E10 petrol.

Generally all vehicles manufactured after 2011 will work with the new fuel, although motorists are advised to check the Government’s E10 checker.

When the new petrol was launched, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Every journey matters as we drive forward the green industrial revolution, which is why the rollout of E10 is so important.

“It’ll help us cut road greenhouse gas emissions and meet our ambitious net zero targets.

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