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Flex-fuel (E85) Vehicle Basics

What is a Flex-fuel Vehicle


Flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs) are engineered to run on blends of gasoline and ethanol in any percentage up to 85 percent. E85 is 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. It is seasonally adjusted for cold weather, and may at times, be less than 85 percent ethanol. To be considered an alternative fuel vehicle (for tax incentives), the car or truck must be able to operate on up to 85 percent ethanol.

Check it Out

According to the National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition, approximately 6 million vehicles have been sold in the United States. Interestingly enough, many buyers remain unaware that they own a flexible fuel vehicle. Be sure to check your owners’ manual—you may be surprised to find you have a FFV already. Is yours on this list?

It is important, however, to use any ethanol blend in accordance with the manufacturers’ specifications—each manufacturer has its own specs. Then it’s as simple as finding a station near you and filling up. Pricing is usually comparable (often less) than regular gasoline, although prices vary regionally.

The use of special engine oil may be required—be sure to check your owners’ manual, and any fuel system replacement parts must be E85 compliant.

Did you know?

All gasoline vehicles are able to operate on gasoline and ethanol blends up to 10 percent. Most pump gas sold in the United States has approximately that amount of ethanol to meet clean air or emissions regulations. These low percentage blends are not classified as alternative fuels.

Find a Flex-fuel Vehicle

The Alternative Fuel Bible: Find Answers to Your Fuel & Vehicle Questions

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