The e-fuel could prolong the life of the internal combustion engine.
As impressive as the Porsche Taycan is, the recent reveal of the new 911 GT3 reminds us that internal combustion is simply better. It speaks to us as gearheads, and a car without an engine or gears doesn't tickle our fancy as much as one that rumbles and burbles. Fortunately, the people at Porsche are just as interested in keeping the combustion engine alive and have committed tens of millions of dollars to developing a clever synthetic fuel in partnership with Siemens Energy. We first reported on this late last year, but now Porsche has announced that the ingenious new fuel could be available as soon as next year.
Speaking to Autocar before this week's GT3 reveal, Porsche sports car boss Frank Walliser said, "We are on track, together with our partners in South America. For sure, in 2022, it will be very, very small volume for the first trials. It's a long road with huge investment, but we are sure that this is an important part of our global effort to reduce the CO2 impact of the transportation sector."
The development of these e-fuels on an industrial scale is in its first phase, called Haru Oni, and is set to use southern Chile's strong winds as part of producing the fuels in a clean manner. Thus, the fuels will be truly clean, not just in their combustion, but in their production too.
This plant should be in operation by 2022 and is expected to produce 55 million liters of synthetic fuel by 2024 and approximately ten times that volume by 2026. The fuels won't require any changes by motorists either, and is being fine-tuned so that they can be used on any modern combustion engine. In addition, Walliser says that, in some cases, the e-fuel provides more power than regular petroleum but with "less particles, less NOx". The overall goal is an expected CO2 reduction of around 85 percent, thanks to efficiency being the main focus from production and transportation to combustion.
The bottom line is this: the future could still have the wondrous sound of an internal combustion engine. Don't let us down, Porsche.