A change in the fu­ture

Motor Equipment News - - NEWS - ED SPEAK

My “doom and gloom” ed­i­to­rial last month about the demise of the in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gine may have been a bit early. Bosch in Ger­many has re­vealed that new syn­thetic liq­uid fu­els which would run in to­day’s en­gines have the ef­fect of mak­ing the en­gine car­bon­neu­tral, and in fact the man­u­fac­ture of th­ese new fu­els would have the ef­fect of “suck­ing” ex­cess car­bon diox­ide from the at­mos­phere.

Bosch cal­cu­lates that the new fuel process, pow­ered by re­new­able elec­tric­ity, could re­duce the car­bon emis­sions in Europe alone by 2.8 gi­ga­tons, which is three times Ger­many’s car­bon emis­sions in 2016. Read more on page 33.

Ex­trap­o­late this glob­ally, par­tic­u­larly in high use coun­tries such as Amer­ica and China, and sud­denly the world will be a much cleaner place!

It won’t hap­pen overnight, of course, and it will have to be used in con­junc­tion with elec­tri­fi­ca­tion where pos­si­ble, but what it means is that the fu­ture for the in­ter­nal com­bus­tion en­gine is still bright.

Add to that con­tin­u­ous re­fine­ment of the ICE it­self, as wit­nessed by Mazda’s amaz­ing new SkyAc­tiv en­gine, and maybe we can stop cry­ing into our beer and get on with an in­ter­est­ing (and petrol­head) fu­ture! And on top of all that, it makes use of ex­ist­ing fill­ing sta­tion in­fra­struc­ture, without re­quir­ing ad­di­tional re­fuel sta­tions as hy­dro­gen and elec­tric pow­ered cars would, and won’t re­quire re­train­ing in the re­pair and ser­vice in­dus­try. You can read about this on page 14.

No fu­ture for leaded fuel

On a dif­fer­ent tack, I was asked to sign a pe­ti­tion the other day, in sup­port of a protest about the pro­posed ban­ning of leaded fuel in Aus­tralia, on the ba­sis that it would have a dev­as­tat­ing ef­fect on mo­tor rac­ing, and par­tic­u­larly clas­sic cars.

What non­sense! New Zealand hasn’t had leaded petrol for decades now, yet we have a vi­brant and thriv­ing clas­sic mo­tor sport sec­tor, both rac­ing and ral­ly­ing, as well as one of the world’s best pop­u­la­tions of hot rods.

Fact is, ad­di­tives are freely avail­able to sort out any prob­lems un­leaded may cause to a clas­sic en­gine, they are not pro­hib­i­tively ex­pen­sive, and quite hon­estly, I don’t see what the Aussie fuss is all about!

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