When it comes to alternative fuels, we offer more alternatives. E85, the fuel of the future, is currently compatible across the Commodore Sedan, Sportwagon, Ute and Captiva Petrol model range. It is an emerging, renewable fuel option that can offer considerable environmental benefits for the future.
What is Ethanol?
Ethanol is the same type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages. It is used as the basis for E85 Fuel - a fuel blend that typically contains a mixture of up to 85 per cent ethanol and at least 15 per cent petrol.
The ethanol in bio-ethanol is a renewable fuel. This means we don't have to put additional stress on the environment or deplete other types of valuable resources to produce it. Using ethanol as an alternative to petrol can also significantly reduce our reliance on finite fossil fuel.
In Australia, ethanol is produced from the by-product, or waste, generated during wheat and sugar production, as well as from sorghum. There are currently three main ethanol producers in Australia with two facilities in Queensland and one in NSW. The ethanol made at these sites is of extremely high quality and the feedstocks used have no conflict with food production.
In addition, there are new technologies being developed for even more efficient and feed-stock flexible ethanol production. Second-generation ethanol fuel production has the potential to make use of local waste materials to convert them into the fuel. By turning our household and agricultural waste into fuel, landfill can be reduced.
Benefits of ethanol
A Reduction in Greenhouse Gas Emissions
By being mostly renewable, E85 helps reduce CO2 being added to the atmosphere because significant amounts of CO2 are absorbed by the plant source during its growth cycle. When driving on E85, you significantly reduce CO2 emissions on a whole lifecycle basis, compared to the use of petrol... from the farm, to the production plant, to the fuel pumps around Australia, or what some refer to as "well to wheel".
Holdens analysis shows that Australian E85 reduces non-renawable CO2 emissions by 20-40% compared to driving with petrol. Future production processes could potentially reduce the CO2 emissions of E85 by up to 90%, compared to petrol.
(Whole of lifecycle means taking into account all CO2 emitted from growing the crops or extracting the crude, producing/refining the fuel, transporting it to market and powering the vehicle.)
Although there is less energy in a litre of bio-ethanol, which means less range than petrol, the ethanol component has a higher octane rating, so you may notice an increase in torque and overall performance for your car.
Holden's introduction of flex-fuel VE Series II Commodores represents an exciting step for the fuel industry and regional Australia. It's a fuel solution that supports the Australian economy, with potential to create local jobs and to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.
The Fuel of the Future
Motorists are increasingly turning to ethanol-based fuels , for a variety of reasons, including reducing their greenhouse gas emissions and strengthening energy security.
Holden Leading the way
At Holden, we are working hard to make bio-ethanol an everyday fuel for Australians.
In September 2011, Holden released the updated MY12 Commodore range of VE Series II Vehicles. Now all Commodore Sedan, Sportwagon and Utes are factory fitted with E85 capability.
V8 Supercars Australia made the switch to E85 at the beginning of the '09 season. So every thrill, spill and nail-biting shoot-out is now powered by a more renewable fuel.
*E85 is not yet commercially available in New Zealand.
E85* ethanol is available at selected Caltex and United Petroleum service stations.
For Caltex locations see:
For United Petroleum service stations see:
For more information on E85 Bio Ethanol, Visit Holden's Fuel Partner, Caltex on