Classics given ethanol reprieve
Transport Minister vows to listen to classic owners' concerns over fuel plans. This is the lead article in Classic Car Weekly out on Wednesday.

DfT open consultation on E10 petrol, consumer protection and fuel pump labelling

Launched in July 2018, the DfT consultation was "seeking views on a range of issues related to renewable transport fuel supply in the UK". The consultation closed on 16th September 2018. GOV.UK consultation
See our earlier NEWS report. 180720 More

E10 contains more bioethanol than traditional petrol in the UK
The DfT publicity says introducing E10 "would help reduce carbon emissions from petrol vehicles, helping the UK meet its climate change targets". The Transport Minister Jesse Norman said: "this Government is ambitiously seeking to reduce the UK’s reliance on imported fossil fuels and cut carbon emissions from transport. But drivers of older vehicles should not be hit hard in the pocket as a result. We have launched this consultation in order to understand the impact of E10 on the UK market better, and to ensure that drivers are protected if any changes come into effect".

See our biofuels "information gateway" with links to earlier news items and articles on the ethanol topic. More

Posted: 181108
Classic Car Weekly reports that "Transport Minister, Chris Grayling MP, has said that classics will not be forced to run on fuel with higher ethanol content". The Minister describes himself as a classic fan and whose first car was a Ford Capri Mk1. He told members of an all party Parliamentary Historic Vehicle Group (APPHVG) that older vehicles would not be caught out by the UK's plans to implement the EU's Fuel Quality Directive by raising the amount of ethanol to 10%.

Sir Greg Knight MP, chairman of the APPHVG said "I am delighted that the Minister, who is a friend of the classic car movement, appreciates our concerns and has taken them on board. I am greatly reassured by his pledge that any roll-out of E10 will be carefully managed and that E5 will remain available for those who need it".

CCW editor, David Simister says "Chris Grayling's comments are an encouraging step but we need to see the detail when the outcome of the DfT's consultation is made public. The crucial thing is that while he says E5 petrol will still continue to be available to classic owners, there's nothing yet on how many forecourts will have it available or whether it will be priced at a premium".

See our E10 NEWS item released on 10th October 2018. More
Around one million cars registered in the UK before 2000 could not use E10
In a report in the Times in October 2018 says "these cars include Rovers (91,600), MGs (75,800), VWs (61,400) and Nissans (55,100). Under the DfT plan motor fuel retailers would be expected to sell E10 alongside existing petrol which contains up to 5% ethanol. It raises the prospect of some larger fuel stations selling three types of petrol: E10, E5 and the more expensive high octane petrol usually with far lower levels of ethanol. Whilst expensive, many classic car enthusiasts do opt for the "super" grades with the general result of lower ethanol impact on the fuel systems. The DfT announcement does not suggest a start date for the new rules but says that E5 will be protected "beyond 2020", raising the prospect that E10 may be available by then.

Clearly many smaller filling stations around the UK will not have sufficient storage infrastructure or fuel pumps to offer motorists three grades of fuel on their forecourts. The continued availability of low ethanol fuels is essential for classic car enthusiasts so following this news item closely will be a concern for many.