European Fuel Quality Directive

The Fuel Quality Directive (2009/30/EC) enables the marketing of new fuels, in particular E10 unleaded petrol, which contains up to 10% ethanol. Fuel suppliers are not expected to market this fuel in the near future, however, in due course, E10 will be introduced and may become the main grade of unleaded petrol towards the latter half of the decade.

The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) has published a list of vehicles compatible with E10 petrol (regularly updated) on its website. This applies to fuels meeting the current EN228:2008 specification only; if you would like any further information please contact your manufacturer.  A “protection grade” of unleaded fuel, which with no more than the current maximum 5% ethanol, will continue to be made available for vehicles that are incompatible with E10.

In due course, diesel will change to a mixture that contains up to 7% FAME (Fatty Acid Methyl Ester), more commonly known as ‘B7’.

All gas oil for use in all non-road mobile machines (NRMM) – known as ‘Red Diesel’ – must contain no more than 10 milligrams of sulphur per kilogram of fuel. This is a reduction of 99% (from the current 1000 mg/kg limit) and brings the sulphur level in the NRMM fuel to the same low level as already exists in the (white) diesel used by road vehicles.

You can also download an SMMT briefing about the changes to specifications of Non-road Gas Oil (Red Diesel) for more detailed information.