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What is E10 Petrol?

Posted on 17th June 2022
What is E10 Petrol?

With concerns about emissions regularly featuring in the news and government discussions, it is no wonder that changes within motoring often focus on how to provide greener methods of powering your vehicle.

In the Summer of 2021, it was announced that the standard grade of petrol in Great Britain would be a more environmentally friendly E10. This replaced the previous E5 standard. For many road users, not much changed, all cars built since 2011 are made to be E10 compatible, therefore it was simply a case of business as usual. Some drivers may not have been aware though and continued to use the more pollutant E5. Inadvertently expressing more harmful fumes from their car than they were aware of.


So, what is E10 petrol and what benefits does it bring to drivers and the planet?

What is E10?

E10 petrol is a cleaner, greener form of petrol and is set to replace the E5 standard that has been commonly used in the past. Where E5 petrol contains up to 5% bioethanol, the E10 variant is made up of 90% unleaded petrol and 10% ethanol. It’ use is estimated to cut Co2 emissions by approximately 750,000 tonnes a year. According to government findings this equates to approximately 350,000 cars being taken off the road!

Since 2016 it has been the petrol grade that has been used for calculating fuel performance and emissions in all new cars.

Can I use E10 petrol in my car?

If you bought a new car after 2011 then your car will be E10 compatible. There are models made earlier than this that will also run on E10 but since 2011, all new cars are manufactured to be E10 compatible. There are some exceptions though.

Which cars cannot use E10 petrol?

Certain cars are unable to use E10 petrol. Whilst 95% of petrol-powered cars can run on this fuel, there are a few that just won’t take you from A-B when filled up with it. It could even be harmful to your vehicle. As me mentioned at the start of this piece, all new cars built since 2011 will run on E10 and E5. So which vehicles won’t get moving with a top up of E10?

  • Classic cars
  • Specific models of certain vehicles
  • Some mopeds, mainly those under 50cc

To be sure, you can do a few things. Checking the user manual will contain information specific to your vehicle, including the required fuel type. In addition, the inside of the fuel cap should contain information relating to what fuel you can use. If you cannot find the information there, you can also ask the dealership from which you bought the car. The government have also provided a handy list where you can check if your vehicle is compatible.

One thing to remember is that diesel vehicles, no matter the year of manufacture, cannot run on E10 petrol.

Other vehicles that cannot use E10 petrol

Some other petrol-powered vehicles are not compatible with E10 so should you own a boat or a light aircraft, stick to using E5. In all cases, you should check the user manual or speak to the manufacturer or dealer for confirmation. Pilots of light aircraft that currently use an E5 petrol knowns as MOGAS should continue to use E5 unless the manufacturer or regulating body have approved a suitable E10.

Can you use E10 petrol in lawnmowers?

Whilst your lawnmower will run on E10 petrol, it can be harmful to it. The ethanol can attract water which can lead to rust and other problems that will affect the running of the machine. Whereas cars are used regularly and consume the fuel relatively, a lawnmower can sit idle for a long time leading to corrosion and operating problems.

What happens if you put E10 petrol in a non-compatible car?

To be safe, you should always check the compatibility, but we know mistakes can happen. The potential damage caused varies from vehicle to vehicle and will depend on how much petrol you have put into the car. If you fill up just one tank of E10, you should not encounter any problems, as long as you fill up with E5 next time. If though, you were to fill up with the wrong petrol type multiple times you could cause damage to the vehicle.

Can you mix E5 and E10 petrol?

If your vehicle is an E10 compatible vehicle, mixing the fuel types will not cause a problem. Therefore, you can fill an E10 compatible car with E5 fuel or top up with E5 should the E10 type not be available.

Is E10 petrol cheaper?

Petrol prices have been in the news an awful lot recently, so any saving is widely appreciated by road users. It is commonly thought that filling up with E10 will be cheaper than E5, in part due to its large availability as the current national standard. However, the overall fueling costs of a vehicle with E10 petrol can be 1.6% more expensive than with E5 due to the reduced fuel economy.


Are you looking to play your part in reducing your carbon footprint with a more environmentally friendly car? Our team at Euphoria Finance have access to over 50,000 vehicles and can help all drivers find their next car with affordable car finance.  As we assess every application on a case-by-case basis, you have no reason to be concerned about credit rating either. We are specialists in bad credit car loans and help secure first car finance as well as loans for those interested in brand new cars on finance.

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