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E10 MATH­E­MAT­ICS

Q WHEN I used E10 fuel in my 2009 Com­modore Omega wagon on a re­cent trip up the coast to Cairns and back tow­ing a 4.5-me­tre pop-top van the con­sump­tion went up by 5-10 per cent, from around 16.0-16.5 litres/ 100 km on 95-oc­tane fuel to 17.5-18.5 litres/100km on E10. The ben­e­fits seem ques­tion­able.

John Klein, email The in­crease in con­sump­tion you re­port is cer­tainly higher than would be ex­pected, but that could be be­cause you were tow­ing. Try it again in nor­mal day-to-day driv­ing and see what you get. The ex­pected in­crease in con­sump­tion is about 3 per cent and that should be off­set by the lower price of E10.

NO CHANGE

Q OVER the past 2 ½ years reg­u­larly chang­ing from E10 to reg­u­lar un­leaded in my 2008 Toy­ota RAV4 I have seen no change in fuel econ­omy run­ning on ei­ther fuel. Its fuel econ­omy is al­ways be­tween 9.4-9.6 litres/ 100km re­gard­less of the fuel used. I don’t be­lieve us­ing E10 is cost­ing me any re­duc­tion in fuel econ­omy and is sav­ing me about three cents per litre ev­ery time I fill up.

Peter Wad­dell, email Your ex­pe­ri­ence is in line with what we’ve been as­sured would hap­pen when switch­ing to E10.

WHICH ONE?

Q AM I cor­rect in us­ing E10 petrol in my 2001 Toy­ota Camry 2.2-litre, or should I use straight un­leaded?

R.G. Bea­dle, email Ac­cord­ing to the FCAI web­site, which uses in­for­ma­tion supplied by the car­mak­ers, you can use E10 in your car.

DUD DASH­BOARD

Q TWO re­cent prob­lems with my Hyundai Elantra have made me won­der if these over­seas-man­u­fac­tured cars are built for Aus­tralian con­di­tions. The first prob­lem was the clutch, which packed in 5000km out­side the 100,000km war­ranty, and the sec­ond was the dash­board that has split in the mid­dle 15 months out­side the five-year war­ranty. Hyundai don’t want to know. The re­place­ment dash costs $1640, plus labour. An ac­quain­tance also had a split in his Elantra dash, but he was still within his war­ranty, so he was cov­ered. Have you had any feed­back con­cern­ing Hyundai dashes split­ting? Mike Mur­ray, Wagga Wagga,

NSW Hyundais are gen­er­ally stand­ing up well to the Aus­tralian con­di­tions, and are get­ting bet­ter with each new gen­er­a­tion that comes to the mar­ket. The clutch went at over 100,000km, so you have to think that’s in the range of be­ing ac­cept­able. The split dash is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent and I would be try­ing to get Hyundai to at least con­trib­ute to the cost of re­pairs.

COOL­ING WORRY

Q I HAVE been told its not pos­si­ble to fit an ex­ter­nal auto trans­mis­sion cooler to my 2006 V8 Ford Fair­lane. I tow a car­a­van on long trips, which would be just un­der the max­i­mum tow­ing ca­pac­ity of 2300-kg when loaded. I’m wor­ried about dam­ag­ing the trans­mis­sion. Is this cor­rect?

Bob Stephens, Ring­wood East Ford has been us­ing cooler pipes that make it dif­fi­cult to break into to fit an ex­ter­nal cooler, but there’s al­ways a way around a prob­lem. Take your car

For­mula:E10 con­sump­tion should be bal­anced by its cost.

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