E15 is Engine Smart
Added to nearly every gallon of gasoline sold in the U.S., ethanol is a low cost, high octane biofuel.
Ethanol is also naturally higher in octane, which enhances engine performance and allows for more efficient engine designs.
Air and fuel are necessary to power the combustion in an automotive engine. Because ethanol is oxygen rich, it helps the fuel burn more completely and results in fewer unburned, unhealthy chemicals leaving the tailpipe.
During combustion, oxygen from ethanol and air binds to hydrogen and carbon in fuels to create water and carbon dioxide. With the addition of oxygen from ethanol, tailpipe emissions like unburned hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide are significantly reduced.
Modern vehicles are equipped with emissions sensors and computer control systems that automatically adjust the fuel and air mixture for maximum performance. This allows nearly any vehicle to operate on a fuel blend containing the standard 10 percent ethanol (E10) or 15 percent ethanol (E15). Fuel systems in Flex Fuel vehicles allow operation on an even wider spectrum of fuel blends.
More Octane = More Power, Greater Efficiency
Ethanol has a naturally high-octane rating of 113. Unleaded gasoline has an octane rating of 85.
The official definition of octane is the measure of a fuel’s ability to resist “knocking” or “pinging” during combustion, caused by the air/fuel mixture detonating prematurely in the engine.
Octane improves engine performance by helping engines run cooler, longer, and to make better horsepower gains.
In the past, chemicals like lead and MTBE were added to increase the octane of motor fuels, but those substances are highly toxic. Since ethanol is clean, renewable, abundant, and inexpensive, it provides the needed boost and is mixed in 97 percent of U.S. motor fuels.
More Miles per Dollar
The extra power offered by ethanol also means modern engines can realize a fuel efficiency gain from even higher ethanol blends. Ethanol blends deliver more miles per dollar, even when accounting for the change in energy content between ethanol and conventional gasoline.
Burning a drop of ethanol will generate less heat than burning a drop of gasoline, but the difference in energy content has little or no impact on mileage. For example, E15 typically costs 3 to 5 percent less than standard E10 blends and contains only 1.5 percent less energy. Therefore, consumers can drive farther for less money when fueling up with a high ethanol blend.
A Better Choice at the Pump
Fuel retailers are continuing to offer higher blends, like E15 to provide consumers with a cleaner, more affordable option at the gas pump. E15 is the most tested fuel in history. The EPA has approved its use in all vehicles 2001 and newer – nearly 9 out of 10 cars on the road today.
Quick Factoid: Ford Motors conducted a study estimating that the most fuel-efficient ethanol blend is between 20 to 40 percent ethanol.
Check out what fuel retailers have to say about E15.
Drivers have a choice at the pump, and they have driven over 16 billion miles using E15.
Even NASCAR mechanics agree, which is why they trust higher ethanol blends and have logged over 15 million miles on the racetrack.
Check out what automotive professionals have to say about E15 and Engine Performance.