Plans are currently underway to make E10 the standard petrol across the United Kingdom as a plan to meet increasingly tighter emission targets. Petrol currently available within the UK has been E5, which is 5 percent ethanol content.
What is E10 ethanol and why should I care?
Ethanol is produced from biomass, typically fermentation of sugar cane and grains, which is noted to have less impact on the environment than petrol which is produced from crude oil. Most motorists don’t pay much attention to which petrol to select at pump, however the level of ethanol can play havoc with older motorcycles and result in expensive repair bills.
Many older vehicles including motorcycles were not designed to consume fuel with a high ethanol content. Ethanol is noted to have a destabilising impact on plastic, rubber and oil based components which result in premature failure. Fuel containing ethanol also tends to destabilise when left unused for long periods of time which causes rusting of metal components, such as steel petrol tanks.
How to protect your classic motorcycle from E10 ethanol
Fortunately products have been on the market for while to help you mitigate the impact of ethanol within petrol, such as fuel stabiliser products and inline filters. We produced some guidance on ethanol a few years ago which still holds true today, so please read and get your self up to speed on protecting your classic or vintage motorcycle.