'Prime example': Petrol changes could be made after motorsport use of sustainable fuels

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Bespoke fuels could be used as a direct replacement for unleaded petrol in almost any vehicle, including the UK’s 35 million vehicles. A staged introduction of cleaner fuels could remove 130 million tonnes of CO2 in Europe by 2030, by reducing greenhouse gases by up to 80 percent.

When using advanced sustainable fuels, nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastian Loeb and Fabian Lurquin claimed second place at the 2022 Dakar Rally.

Two further vehicles competed as part of the team, also powered by sustainable fuel, finishing in fourth and 54th position. 

The sustainable fuel, which was created by global specialists Coryton, meant the vehicle also marked a major milestone for sustainable motoring having reduced CO2 emissions from the three vehicles by up to 80 percent during the race.

The cars ran on a second-generation biofuel, produced by the catalytic transformation of bioethanol derived from agricultural waste.

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“That will be when they have their transition to fully sustainable fuel. The transition was supposed to be next year, but it had to be delayed because of some technical issues around replacing current fossil fuel with something sustainable.

“It’s the maturity of the technology and what’s available now. They have a very specific set of engineering issues in F1.

“Other motorsport series have already used more sustainable fuels. For instance, the Dakar Rally.

“This was a really interesting opportunity for us to show on a world stage that these fuels were viable in some pretty extreme conditions.

“So the fuel that was used by the BRX team was made from 90 percent sustainable components, and there was a mix of technologies in there.”

It is hoped that the use of sustainable fuels will continue within motorsport, followed by a transition into use in the wider public.

The Government launched a form of biofuel onto forecourts in September 2022 with the introduction of E10 fuel.

This was made of up to 10 percent of renewable bioethanol made from waste products, in the hopes that it will dramatically reduce emissions from vehicles.

Mr Richardson continued, saying: “It showed that you can do this on a wide scale and under demanding conditions.

“We know that you’ve got the WRC starting to do something similar this year. British Touring Cars are also running a 20 percent renewable fuel for the next five years.

“Showcasing these technologies in motorsport, it’s a brilliant proving ground for it.

“We did start to get calls from the public, and it might not be practical for individuals at the moment.

“But we’re trying to raise that awareness. We’re trying to get the Government and local authorities to show them a prime example of what we can do.

“It will give investors the confidence to put that money into technologies so we can scale up and start getting that into the general market.”



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