GM Increases Visibility of Flex-Fuel Vehicles
— General Motors has announced plans that will aid in distinguishing its new flexible-fuel vehicles (FFV) capable of running on ethanol blends like E-85 (85-percent ethanol) from their regular gasoline-powered vehicles. According to a National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition release, in about 400,000 of their new FFVs, GM will replace the original gas caps with ones that are colored yellow. Currently, there is no universal labeling that identifies the almost 5 million FFVs on American roads. GM’s new fuel cap will alert a driver if their vehicle is compatible. GM is also considering a large marketing strategy that will help promote FFVs and E-85. These plans include placing educational newspaper ads and distributing mailings to flexible-fuel vehicle owners informing them of their vehicle’s fuel capability and their closest E-85 fueling site. There are now about 480 public E-85 fueling sites in the United States, largely located in the agricultural states of the Midwest where the corn that is popularly used for producing ethanol is widely produced. There are currently about 1.5 million GM model flexible-fuel vehicles. GM’s model year 2006 line include the 3.5L Impala and Monte Carlo; and the 5.3L Avalanche, Tahoe, Silverado, Sierra, Suburban, Tahoe, Yukon, and Yukon XL.