E10 petrol

This came a bit out of the blue for me:

We have an old SORN’d VW Polo from early 2000’s which may not be compatible - will need to see which stations stock the higher octane stuff.

It’s about time. We used it in France in 2019 and there was no difference.

I’m sure it’s a step forwards just surprised it’s not been more highly publicised, I caught a snippet of something on the radio the other day so searched tonight.

Any idea if the E10 petrol damages incompatible engines or is simply less efficient with reduced performance - that to me would be the key question.

Not that I have one, but there must be many vintage cars people cherish that need the higher octane fuel.

You can check if your vehicle is ok here:

As to ‘cherished vehicles’, or old bangers that belch crap from the exhaust, perhaps it’s time to retire them.

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I think the issues can be with fuel systems; rubber and plastics etc used in the fuel pipes, carburetors and what-not.

My chainsaw doesn’t like it… It makes the fuel cap swell and lock in place, apart from that it runs fine.

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Classic cars can be modified to be less polluting. May they remain on the roads to warm the hearts of those that have fond memories :relaxed:


Funnily enough the thought crossed my mind, but surely numbers nationwide are pretty low in the grand scheme of things. Low hanging fruit?

And if they are people’s primary car then the environmental impact of the replacement vehicle will heavily outweigh the saving from fuel.


97 Octane (Super Unleaded) will remain as E5 should you be driving a vehicle that requires 97 RON.

Rubber and plastics seem to be the most affected and in general most classics won’t be running on original fuel hoses and all of mine will be changed before returning to the road.

Many modern bikes use plastic fuel tanks and these can be troublesome.

My ‘modern’ (26) car is deemed compatible by FoMoCo and my Cosworth requires SUL anyway so no issue there. And my Ninja has is ok according to Kawasaki - I can always switch to SUL if I detect any running issues as the cost difference is not much anyway with an 18 litre fuel tank.


I’ve visited Dagenham and the machines used to make the cars are huge - the one to press a fiesta wing was about the size of a three bedroom house.

Will all stations be required to retain the 97 Octane fuel though, or might owners need to identify accessible garages in advance?

97 RON isn’t available at all fuel stations so it’s probably best to not let the tank run too low.
Texaco, Shell and Tesco usually have 97 or higher.


Both our current cars are lease diesel vehicles (taken in my the diesel argument years ago), the SORN’d vehicle may be RON 95, I need to check - chances are it’ll just get scrapped but often handy to have an old banger for dirty trips to the tip or simply a less comfortable backup.


I partially agree, but it depends on the environmental cost of replacement: Ie. Is it better overall for the environment to have an average car life of, say, 10 years, newer models benefitting from the latest emissions limiting technology, or 20 years, with more cars having poorer emissions control, but only half the environmental cost of manufacture? That would make for an interesting study to find the environmentally optimal car life.


Most garages currently sell E5 and will change to E10 in September. You can easily identify what is being sold as they need to display and E5 or E10 sticker on the dispenser near to the grade marking. Its about the size if a 10p, round with black writing on a white background. As you probably know, it denotes the Ethanol content as a %, so E5 contains 5% bioethanol.
Diesel nozzles shoukd be marked with a sticker in the same way, but the sticker is square and will contain B7 to denote 7% biodiesel content.
I will add that this is for the UK, so apologies to anyone outside the UK.

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Esso super is still ethanol free in most parts of the country (from Esso web site):

“Although our pumps have E5 labels on them, our Synergy Supreme+ 99 is actually ethanol free (except, due to technical supply reasons, in Devon, Cornwall, North Wales, North England and Scotland). Legislation requires us to place these E5 labels on pumps that dispense unleaded petrol with ‘up to 5% ethanol’, including those that contain no ethanol, which is why we display them on our Synergy Supreme+ 99 pumps.”

Liquid gold for us classic bikers and long may it continue!


It’s an interesting balance. I was specifically referring to particulate emissions rather than CO2. A ‘classic’ car drive past the other day while we were walking and it absolutely stank. Thousands die every year from poor air quality.

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The only problem with them doing that, is that if they decide to change, they won’t be obliged to tell you as the pumps already display the markings.

Driving back from Portugal a couple of years ago via Spain stopped in Vigo on the west coast pulling into a flash petrol station to see B7 and my car saying NO BIODIESEL on the fuel cap - left me in a bit of a panic.

Not the panic I’ve had (twice!) filling my Audi A4 diesel with petrol.

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They have been putting bio in the derv for a while, but if under a certain level they didn’t have to disclose it. New regs now mean they have to disclose bio content.

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