An E100 engine is basically an E85 engine that has had its compression ratio raised to to take advantage of ethanol's high octane, built with direct injection (DI) and changes
to the engine control software to maximize mileage. These changes include running lean and spark advance. (By tuning the power level, Les MacTaggart of the Indy Racing League believes equivalent or better mileage to gasoline can be obtained with E100 at the same power level. (Click on Indy engines below to see article.)
It would cost only $70 - $100 more to make an E100 direct injection engine flex/fuel engine than it does to make a direct injection gasoline engine. If you were to make an E100 engine that couldn't burn gasoline at all, which is the preferable route, the engine would actually cost less.
The auto companies have made multi-port fuel injection engines capable of burning E100 in Brazil for many years. It would be a straightforward process to go to direct injection and make them available in the US.
An E100 DI engine would be made on the same engine lines as we have now. There would be no huge new capital investment necessary and no years of further research.
Since these engines would perform better than gasoline using E100 (the reverse of the current situation with E85), the retail franchisees would be more willing to invest in the ethanol equipment.
Price of the E100 fuel would be controlled by the ethanol companies, not the oil companies. This would benefit the consumer through price competition for motor fuel for the first time in the history of the United States.
Just as in the case of seat belts and airbags, however, this engine technology is not going to come into production on any sort of rapid timetable without a government mandate.
A government mandate that all new light duty vehicles sold in the US cannot be powered by gasoline (or diesel) after model year 2028 would make us independent of imported oil in short order, dramatically lower CO2 emissions, and bring glacier melting and global warming to a screeching halt as discussed on an earlier page.
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Last Updated June 26, 2022