Chevrolet, a division of General Motors, has been manufacturing cars powered by biofuel for the last eight years. According to Beth Lowery, GM Vice President, Environment, Energy and Safety Policy, “at GM, we believe that the biofuel with the greatest potential to displace petroleum–based fuels in the U.S. is ethanol.” GM’s preferred form of ethanol is called E85, a mix of eighty-five percent ethanol to fifteen percent gas, and is presently produced from grain products grown in the US.
And whether one agrees with the way in which ethanol feedstocks are produced and the fact that ethanol powered vehicles still rely on fossil fuel gasoline in some way, Chevrolet presents a diverse selection of alternative fuel vehicles including the Avalanche, Impala, HHR, Silverado, Suburban, Tahoe and Express.
For those that feel eco friendly vehicles compromise the rugged nature of a solid vehicle or that biogases lessen the power of the “he-man” truck, think again because even the big V8 engine in the Silverado is being offered in E85. In fact, it is believed that E85 offers more octane than traditional gas thereby increasing the horsepower to some extent in vehicles using the biofuel. The thought now is that E85 is in reality more powerful, contrary to the beliefs of the naysayers who are still caught in some time warp using any excuse to smash down technology.
In addition, Chevrolet seems to have added another model to the E85 group according to television commercials airing in Canada. The most recent addition, which will be made available to the public December 2008, is the sedan class 2009 Chevy Malibu E85 FlexFuel.