Ethanol & Your Vehicle

     Using Ethanol          E10          E85          Auto Racing          Warranty Statements          Other Engines


Using Ethanol

Ethanol is a clean, renewable, high performance fuel for your vehicle. Up to a 10% blend of ethanol (E10) is covered under warranty by every auto manufacturer that sells vehicles in the U.S. for every make and every model of vehicle. E85 (85% ethanol, 15% gasoline) is for use in flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs) which can operate on gasoline or any blend of ethanol up to 85%.


E10 is 10% ethanol and 90% unleaded gasoline, a fuel blend covered under warranty by every automobile manufacturer that sells vehicles in the U.S. for every make and every model of automobile. Many recommend its use because of its high octane and superior performance characteristics.

Ethanol is currently blended into more than 75% of America's gasoline, the majority as the E10 blend. Each state determines whether gasoline needs to be labeled if containing ethanol, so if you're in an area where labeling is voluntary or not required, it is not always possible to tell if the gasoline contains ethanol. Ethanol blends are offered extensively throughout the Midwest and are becoming more and more widely available from coast to coast.

Because ethanol has an octane rating of 113, adding 10% ethanol to gasoline raises the finished fuel's octane rating by 2 or 3 points, improving the fuel's performance.

E10 is safe to use in small engines such as motorcycles, lawn mowers, trimmers, boats, personal watercraft, snowmobiles, ATVs, and many others. Manufacturers understand that a considerable portion of the gasoline sold in this country contains ethanol and ensure that their products are compatible with oxygenated fuel.

back to top


Classified as an alternative fuel by the U.S. Department of Energy, E85 is a blend of 85% ethanol and 15% unleaded gasoline for use in flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs). Because E85 is for use in a specific type of vehicle, it is always labeled clearly at the pump. An FFV can operate on any blend of ethanol up to 85%, and if E85 is not available, the vehicle can operate on straight unleaded gasoline or any percentage of ethanol up to 85%.

Major automakers including DaimlerChrysler, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Mercury, Isuzu, and Mercedes manufacture vehicles that can operate on E85. FFVs have been produced for several years, and the number of E85-compatible makes and models is increasing each year. On some models this comes as an option, on some it comes standard - check with your auto dealer before ordering or purchasing your vehicle.

Ethanol is a clean, environmentally friendly fuel and in an 85% blend, it is very clean and even more environmentally friendly. E85 reduces harmful hydrocarbon and greenhouse gas emissions. E85 is the highest performance fuel you can purchase at the retail level with its octane rating of at least 105. Because E85 vehicles are flexible by nature, owning an FFV is a practical way to enter the world of alternative fuels without any limitations on the vehicle's range.

back to top

Auto Racing


Ethanol has been used as a fuel or fuel additive in various auto races for a number of years, but ethanol's relationship with the Indy Racing League (IRL) has propelled the renewable fuel to a national racing platform.

In the IRL IndyCar Series' 2007 season, the series had the switch from its former race fuel, methanol, to 100% ethanol. The transition began during the 2006 season when the series used a 10% ethanol, 90% methanol blend. One-hundred percent ethanol is now the fuel of the IndyCar Series, including the world-famous Indy 500. The late Paul Dana, the first driver for "Team Ethanol," was the architect of the ethanol / IRL partnership.

Learn more about the IRL fuel switch in the Ethanol Today feature, "Powerful Partnership Accelerates Indy & Ethanol." To view the current IRL season schedule, visit

In 2011, NASCAR and "American ethanol" came together to make "Green E15" the official race fuel of all three of the NASCAR national touring series. Read more in the Ethanol Today feature, "NASCAR Chooses Ethanol," beginning on page 28 of this magazine.

back to top

Warranty Statements

Up to a 10% blend of ethanol is covered under warranty by every auto manufacturer that sells vehicles in the U.S. (listed below) for every make and every model of vehicle. Many of these manufacturers recommend ethanol's use because of its clean-burning and high-octane characteristics.

  • BMW
  • DaimlerChrysler
  • Ferrari
  • Ford
  • General Motors
  • Honda / Acura
  • Hyundai
  • Isuzu
  • Jaguar
  • Kia
  • Land Rover
  • Mazda
  • Mercedes-Benz
  • Mitsubishi
  • Nissan / Infiniti
  • Porsche
  • Saab
  • Subaru
  • Suzuki
  • Toyota
  • Volkswagen / Audi
  • Volvo

Boats & Personal Watercraft
Warranty statements of the boat manufacturers listed below approve of the use of ten-percent ethanol blends in their inboard or outboard motors.

  • Bombardier
  • Honda
  • Indmar Marine
  • Mercury Marine
  • Nissan
  • Evinrude, Johnson
  • Pleasurecraft
  • Suzuki
  • Yamaha

The snowmobile manufacturers listed below have warranty statements that include ethanol as an approved fuel. Many manufacturers recommend its use to promote clean air in areas of heavy snowmobile use such as Yellowstone National Park.

  • Arctic Cat*
  • Bombardier
  • Honda
  • Kawasaki
  • Polaris
  • Suzuki
  • Yamaha

* Arctic Cat requires that fuel designation connector be disconnected from ECU when using any oxygenated fuel.

Other Small Engines
Ten-percent ethanol blends are also covered under warranty by these makers of other small engines.

  • AGCO
  • Ariens
  • Briggs & Stratton
  • Coleman
  • ECHO
  • Generac Power Systems
  • Homelite
  • Honda
  • Husqvarna
  • John Deere
  • Kohler
  • Lawn Boy
  • Massey Ferguson
  • Murray
  • Poulan
  • Sears
  • Simplicity
  • Snapper
  • Toro
  • Troy-Bilt

For specific warranty language, please e-mail ACE with your request.

back to top

Latest News

ACE says Blend Wall "Cost" Reports are Incomplete and Misleading read more

ACE meets with Administration and Capitol Hill decision makers during grassroots fly-in this week read more

All News
What is RSS?

site design and programming for Associations by insight marketing design