E10 fuel to replace petrol and what it means?

legal updates

Unlike with petrol/diesel misfuelling, a one-off mistake at the pumps is not likely to cause any lasting damage, providing the correct fuel is used as soon as possible.

Read our disclaimer keyboard_arrow_down

This website content is intended as a general guide to law as it applies to the motor trade. Lawgistics has taken every effort to ensure that the contents are as accurate and up to date as at the date of first publication.

The laws and opinions expressed within this website may be varied as the law develops. As such we cannot accept liability for or the consequence of, any change of law, or official guidelines since publication or any misuse of the information provided.

The opinions in this website are based upon the experience of the authors and it must be recognised that only the courts and recognised tribunals can interpret the law with authority.

Examples given within the website are based on the experience of the authors and centre upon issues that commonly give rise to disputes. Each situation in practice will be different and may comprise several points commented upon.

If you have any doubt about the correct legal position you should seek further legal advice from Lawgistics or a suitably qualified solicitor. We cannot accept liability for your failure to take professional advice where it should reasonably be sought by a prudent person.

All characters are fictitious and should not be taken as referring to any person living or dead.

Use of this website shall be considered acceptance of the terms of the disclaimer presented above.

This month sees the introduction of E10 fuel to replace the old E5 standard. The new fuel contains a higher percentage of renewable bioethanol (10%, up from 5%) in a drive to reduce CO2 emissions but it is not without consequence. 

All UK vehicles made after 2011 should be compatible with E10, together with most vehicles made since the late 1990’s. Check to see if any given vehicle is compatible by entering its details on the government’s E10 Service Page. That said, the accuracy of such a check is not guaranteed and may be affected by certain aftermarket modifications.

It is estimated as many as 600,000 vehicles on UK roads will not be compatible with the new fuel and for them, they will need to use the much more expensive super grade E5 unleaded petrol or risk running issues and damage to seals, plastics, and metals over the long-term, given the corrosive properties of bioethanol. Indeed, classic cars are particularly vulnerable to the long-term corrosive effects of E10.

Unlike with petrol/diesel misfuelling, a one-off mistake at the pumps is not likely to cause any lasting damage, providing the correct fuel is used as soon as possible.

For those switching to E10, it is not all sweetness and light, since bioethanol is less efficient than unleaded petrol, with the problem exacerbated in cars with smaller engines.

According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) “In general, vehicle fuel economy may decrease by about 3% when using E10.”

It is vital that those affected are made aware of these changes and for the motor trade, that means when selling a vehicle, advice should properly be given as to whether it runs on E10 or E5 and perhaps even what that might mean in terms of economy and pump prices. Similar advice should be given on service, as appropriate.

Ultimately, there is no such thing as a free lunch!

ECSC Group plcMore Secure

On average 55 vulnerabilities are identified daily.

What can I do?

Review your organisations priorities and ask ‘can we afford a breach?’. What do I do during an incident? Who do I involve? When do I involve the ICO?

If you’re unable to answers these questions, you need help from the experts.

Howard TilneyHead of Strategy / Legal AdvisorRead More by this author

Related Legal Updates

New laws on petrol filling stations

If you held a licence to store petrol on 1st October 2014 they remain valid until expiry dates.

Get in touch

Complete the form to get in touch or via our details below:

01480 455500

Vinpenta House
High Causeway

By submitting this quote you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.