Ethanol in Fuel

Ethanol in Fuel

A 2007 U.S. law known as the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS), requires refiners to mix 13.2 billion gallons of renewable fuels, such as ethanol, with gasoline in 2012- and 15 billion gallons by 2015.


What is Ethanol?

Ethanol is a type of alcohol which is combined with gasoline, primarily to reduce engine knock. In combustion, ethanol provides less energy, resulting in reduced fuel economy. (NOTE: It takes a gallon and a half of Ethanol to produce the same amount of power as a gallon of Non-Ethanol Blended Gasoline!)

When ethanol burns inside the engine, it tends to form a weaker mixture that may cause misfire, rough idle and cold start issues in your vehicle. In addition, engine components may deteriorate over time when in contact with ethanol.

Consequently, commercial gasoline is limited to a maximum of 10% ethanol. As stated in your BMW Owner’s Manual, fuels containing 10% or less ethanol will NOT void the applicable warranties covering defects in materials or workmanship.


Detergent additives and how they affect fuel quality.

Detergent additives have been required by the EPA in gasoline since 1995 to control the formation of engine and fuel system deposits. Lower quality gasoline is formulated with less effective and less expensive detergent additives. Over time, even occasional use of this gasoline robs your engine of its power, performance and fuel efficiency.


What gasoline does BMW recommend?

BMW recommends using TOP TIER Detergent Gasoline with a minimum octane rating of AKI91. This gasoline also complies with the 10% or less ethanol requirement. It’s a higher standard with enhanced fuel detergency that helps to avoid drivability problems.

For more information and a list of participating retailers, visit



American Coalition for Ethanol

Concerned about the possible effects of ethanol-blended gasoline on the engine of your classic BMW? The Historic Vehicle Association has compiled a comprehensive collection of information and resources that offers enthusiasts the facts. For more info, visit Historic Vehicle Association : Ethanol Information






Voted Atlanta’s #1 BMW & Mini Service Shop

Satisfaction Guaranteed

Call us today


or message us online: