Prodrive to run jointly developed sustainable fuel

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British motorsport specialist Prodrive says it is to be one of the first major teams in the world to compete with a new generation of advanced sustainable fuels in an FIA championship – the FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies later this year. The Prodrive-run Bahrain Raid Xtreme (BRX) team will then use the fuel at the Dakar rally in January to demonstrate that sustainable fuels can be used as a direct replacement for fossil fuels in standard production vehicles.

Prodrive says it has developed the sustainable fuel over the past eight months in conjunction with UK-based Coryton Advanced Fuels. Called Prodrive ECOpower, it has been specifically formulated to demonstrate the environmental benefits of the latest sustainable fuel technology. The main components are generation 2 biofuel, manufactured from agricultural waste, and e-fuels created by capturing carbon from the atmosphere.

Prodrive chairman David Richards commented, “I am a great advocate of motorsport taking the lead in developing, proving and promoting new technologies that can help address climate change. Covering thousands of miles across the toughest terrains, the Dakar and the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies are the perfect environment to showcase the benefits of the next generation of sustainable fuels and demonstrate that they can be used in road vehicles to reduce the use of fossil fuels, while still offering the same performance and range.”

The fuel has been developed at Prodrive’s powertrain facility at its headquarters at Banbury in the UK and has been run in the BRX team’s Prodrive Hunter T1+ car in the same unmodified engines which previously ran on petrol. While the fuel has been developed for motorsport use, it can be used as a direct replacement for unleaded petrol in almost any vehicle and the company is planning to run a near identical fuel in a number of its road vehicles to further prove out the technology.

Coryton CEO Andrew Willson added, “Coryton has a long history in blending bespoke fuels for the motorsport industry, and to further support our customers’ evolving needs, we’ve recently launched Sustain, our new sustainable fuels offering. We knew that partnering with Prodrive would be an ideal way to test our capability in some of the world’s most challenging racing environments, alongside some of the finest engineering expertise in the industry.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he oversees Automotive Powertrain Technology and Professional Motorsport World magazines as editor.

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