Today’s automotive engineers know that fuel efficiency is just as important as performance.
This ambition has led to one car brand inventing a groundbreaking way of developing new engine technology: one that offers some of the best compression rates in the world.
Higher compression petrol engines, and other technologies such as engine downsizing and boosted direct injection, offer potential for better fuel efficiency, but they also need predictability in terms of performance and ignition. The higher octane levels that fuel ethers bring when blended with petrol make them an ideal complementary technology for engine efficiency innovations.
The aim of Mazda’s SkyActiv-X technology is not simply to make an engine run as efficiently as possible, it is to make the entire vehicle a fully efficient, fuel-saving machine. Mazda says the new engine, which has a 14:1 compression ratio and launches in 2019, will be 20-30% more fuel efficient than Mazda’s current gasoline engine.
The higher octane levels that fuel ethers
bring when blended with petrol make them an ideal complementary technology for engine-efficiency innovations
To achieve this target, SkyActiv-X utilises i-Stop, a technology that switches off the vehicle engine when the car is at a stop, saving on fuel. Its combination of optimal positioning of pistons and direct fuel injection means the driver can restart their car in an instant, leading to increased fuel economy. Fuel ethers also offer benefits here as they improve the performance of petrol, even when the engine is at lower temperatures.
It is the high-performance benefits of fuel ether-blended petrol that allow manufacturers to get more from their engines and push the limits of their designs. Smaller, higher-compression engines, engine downsizing and boosted direct injection that offer greater efficiency without drops in performance, need the reliability of high quality fuel.
This, combined with the need to reduce harmful emissions, means that fuel ethers have a vital role to play in ushering in the new generation of engine technologies.