The Federal Government will issue new guidelines for using flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs) with flex engines by October. The guideline specifies the engine configuration and other changes required for the vehicle to comply with the specified changes in the fuel mixture.
What is a flexible fuel vehicle (FFV)?
The FFV full form is Flexible Fuel Vehicle. The FFV is an improved version of the vehicle that can be operated not only with gasoline but also with gasoline doped with various mixtures of ethanol. With the FFV, vehicles are capable of all blends and run on refined fuels. FFV has a compatible engine that can run on mixed ethanol of 84% or higher.
- FFV aims to reduce the consumption and harmful emissions of contaminated fossil fuels.
- Ethanol as an alternative fuel costs 6,062 rupees per litre, while gasoline costs more than 100 rupees per litre in many parts of the country. Therefore, by using ethanol, Indians can save 3035 Rupees per litre.
- For India, FFVs are another advantage as automobiles will be capable of using various blends of ethanol-blended gasoline obtainable in other parts of the country.
In addition, these vehicles are a logical extension of the Ethanol Mixed Gasoline (EBP) program launched by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas in January 2003. Due to the surplus of Indian corn, sugar and wheat, a compulsory ethanol mixing program helps farmers earn higher incomes.
In the Indian economy as a whole, increasing the use of ethanol as a fuel for automobiles helps save import costs as the country imports more than 80% of crude oil demand.
Disadvantages / Challenges of Using FFVs:
- Customer acceptance is a significant challenge as the operating and operating costs are very high compared to 100% petrol vehicles.
- When operating with 100% ethanol (E100), the operating cost (due to low fuel efficiency) will be 30% or higher.
- Flex-fuel engines are more expensive because the chemistry of ethanol is very different from that of gasoline.
- Ethanol has a much lower calorific value (40%) than gasoline and a very high latent heat of vaporization, which leads to wear such as cooling and combustion of cargo.