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Automakers Approve E15 For Use in Two-Thirds of New Vehicles

November 4, 2014


WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) analysis of model year (MY) 2015 warranty statements and owner’s manuals reveals that auto manufacturers explicitly approve the use of E15 (15 percent ethanol, 85 percent gasoline) in approximately two-thirds of new vehicles. E15 is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for all 2001 and newer vehicles — accounting for roughly 80 percent of the vehicles on the road today.

Based on the latest vehicle sales and market share data, nearly 63 percent of MY 2015 vehicles will have unequivocal E15 approval from their manufacturers. When coupled with expected MY 2015 flex-fuel vehicle (FFV) production, it is estimated that E15 will be allowed in close to 70 percent of MY 2015 vehicles. Manufacturers approve the use of up to 85 percent ethanol blends in FFVs.

“This election day — and every day — Americans want the freedom to choose what fuel to put into their vehicles. For years, Big Oil has monopolized the market and limited that choice. But, today’s analysis should send a clear message to the EPA and Congress that E15 is here to stay. Even with falling gas prices, ethanol remains the lowest-cost liquid transportation fuel on the planet. If EPA reverses course and embraces the statutory levels of the Renewable Fuel Standard, E15 and higher-level ethanol blends will propel our country past the so-called ‘blend wall’ and increased biofuels use will move our country to a clean and sustainable future,” stated Bob Dinneen, president and CEO of the RFA.

The RFA analysis revealed several promising trends, including:

  • After approving the use of E15 in some of its 2014 Honda and Acura models, Honda Motor Company has extended E15 warranty coverage to all models in 2015.
  • All Toyota models in 2015 include explicit E15 approval, up from just a fraction of Toyota models in 2014. Just as in 2014, E15 is approved for use in most, but not all, 2015 Lexus models.
  • For the fourth year in a row, General Motors approves the use of E15 in all models. Similarly, E15 is approved in all Ford models for the third year in a row. Vehicles from these two automakers alone account for roughly one-third of sales in the United States.
  • Audi, Jaguar, Land Rover, Porsche, and Volkswagen also expressly approved the use of E15 in their 2015 models.
  • Inexplicably, the Chrysler Group failed for the fourth year in a row to approve the use of E15 in owners’ manuals for its models. Still, a significant share of Chrysler output is expected to be FFV-capable, meaning E15 is approved for use in those vehicles.

The RFA analysis can be found here.