GM’s domestic market with E85 FFVs has been limited to the big boys: trucks and SUVs. But they’ve been “dabbling” if you will with what may be their next generation. Saab sedans.
The Saab BioPower sedan. Check it out here and here. Note that the 2.0t version that has been selling prior to the 2.3t release showed an improvement of fuel economy when running 100% ethanol over 100% gasoline – in the exact same car. This fact alone should put those who say E85 is inherently less efficient into either tizzies or the right frame of mind. Indeed, as I’ve been saying for years, the future of automtive power lies through ethanol. From E10 to E85 to E100 to hybrid ethanol/electricity to possibly ethanol powered fuel cells. All using the existing gasoline infrastructure.
Indeed, consider this report on Saab:
The future for Saab
In addition to the 2.0t and 2.3t BioPower engines that are available on the Saab 9-5 range, Saab has already developed BioPower engines that can run on pure bioethanol (E100) fuel, and mated them with electric motors. In both applications it eliminates fossil fuel emissions altogether, highlighting the enormous potential that BioPower technology holds for the future.The 15% of fossil fuel in E85 is to assist cold starting performance in low temperatures, although Saab has already developed an engine modification that will allow the use of E100 fuel (pure bioethanol) in all operating conditions.
Shown this year at the Stockholm, London and Paris motor shows, the Saab 9-3 Convertible BioPower Hybrid Concept Car demonstrates how pure bioethanol and electric power can be combined to yield fuel and energy savings, as well as greater performance. It is the world’s first hybrid vehicle capable of delivering zero fossil fuel emissions at all times.
There you have it. For those who don’t know, GM owns Saab. Can it be that GM is experimenting with the Swedish company where it knows there will be more fanfare and usage? Can it be that once they’ve been able to develop the technology and display it on the road that it becomes a proven technology for them to bring to the US? Quite likely.
Yet what will happen when they do? Tellingly the environazis lambasting GM today for their SUVs will proudly proclaim they made GM do it. Never mind the fact that even today, GM has been doing it for years. They’ve just been doing it the smart way. Now if only we can see them developing lightweight SUVs, cars, and minivans.