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GM, still in bed with oil companies thinks higher octane will save us all...

SSedan

Active Member
Jul 24, 2017
2,948
2,309
Greenville Wisconsin
Did you read the article? It clearly spells out how it doesn't contain any more energy.

This is about a small improvement in efficiency, and depending what they do to raise octane might be more toxic. Not up on current octane chemistry but some things they have used in the past were pretty bad.
 

scaesare

Well-Known Member
Mar 14, 2013
8,247
13,192
NoVA
Did you read the article? It clearly spells out how it doesn't contain any more energy.

This is about a small improvement in efficiency, and depending what they do to raise octane might be more toxic. Not up on current octane chemistry but some things they have used in the past were pretty bad.

Indeed. It was that point in the article that prompted me to mention many people think otherwise.
 

McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
Compression rocks.

With spark engines, compression is 'free' horsepower, which is my personal favorite. That means there is no downside. You make more ponies from idle to past redline with the same amount of fuel and air.

One of the reasons diesel is so efficient is because you cram 3 bars of air into a 17:1 combustion bowl, torch da' beetch, and make wicked pressure. Hey, if you're goin' use heat to make something expand, start out with it compressed like hell. HS Chem 101.

If you were a gearhead in the 1960's or 70's it would blow your freakin' mind what they are doing today. Over 11:1 compression on what amounts to Coors. 87 today is a pretty shiitty propellant. It's polluted with vodka; ethanol hence water are in gasoline since grain alky is hygroscopic to the max. It sucks water out of the air like a politician sucks money outta your wallet. They banned anything resembling a well-engineered octane enhancer (MTBE) so we have the crappiest gas in history.

With 91 octane? IIRC, they are up past 13.5:1 now. 91 is not 'high octane'. After 1 month it's about as good as regular was in 1969 at suppressing detonation. I can buy 100 octane (CARB approved) at the pump. I can buy 120+ octane for off-road use only in cans and barrels. There is a blend that will act like 145 octane if you run it rich, great for nitrous or supercharged engines.

BTW, it's not a General Motors thing and it does not cause pickups to explode. Estes rocket engines do. IIRC, it was a racing development that caused the latest jump in CR. Direct Gasoline Injection is why 11:1 doesn't detonate on crap fuel.
 
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McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
... I know little of cars or engineering or how motor fuel is made but I know General Motors like the back of my hand, I've worked there since the early 1900's and I'm Mary Barra's boss. God asks me for mechanical advice.

Fixed it for you.

Does BMW even sell a vehicle that runs on 87 octane is the USA? I've never seen one.

Can you show me an aerial mapping of Chevron's corn fields? That's what they use to boost octane.

But it's GM's intense thirst for 87 octane that is making Chevron rich growing corn. BMW creates their 91 octane in particle beam accelerators so it's greener than Al Gore's trust fund.
 
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JohnSnowNW

Active Member
Feb 13, 2015
2,631
2,751
Minnesota
Well, that would pass the added cost of meeting efficiency targets onto the consumer. So, I guess I can see why that would be better for business.
 

McRat

Well-Known Member
Jan 20, 2016
5,771
5,414
LA
Well, that would pass the added cost of meeting efficiency targets onto the consumer. So, I guess I can see why that would be better for business.

Yes, the technology is expensive. But it's effective and getting cheaper. It is today's catalytic converter, a 'magic wand' to improve air quality.

If an automaker was actually "in-bed" with petroleum refiners, they would push for low compression. This would increase fuel sales. It would reduce production costs of ICE powertrains. Some companies have been more active than others in pushing digital controls that clean up our air. Some of these companies are singled out as being the worst offenders when in fact they are the leaders.

We have a major problem with illusions over technology. We have a narrative that claims things are getting worse when in fact they are improving due to technology. It harms EV adoption with stories about batteries being a pollution threat and safety hazard. It harms clean-air technologies by putting forth the concept that it is ineffective engineering that makes for more pollution instead of less.
 

scaesare

Well-Known Member
Mar 14, 2013
8,247
13,192
NoVA
If an automaker was actually "in-bed" with petroleum refiners, they would push for low compression. This would increase fuel sales. It would reduce production costs of ICE powertrains.

I think this simplistic statement that fails to account for competition from EV's and the like.

Absent this competition, then driving consumption up in cartel mode makes sense. However if your very existence is threatened by EV's that are considered cleaner/more efficient, then attempting to close that gap as a self-preservation measure makes sense.
 

SabrToothSqrl

Active Member
Dec 5, 2014
3,699
2,977
PA
I just don't get it. Every dollar spent on improving gas anything at this point, would be like making a black and white TV with a sharper image... when color flat screens already exist. It's a waste of time, effort, and pollution. We aren't ending our need for oil any time soon, but let's deal with the engines we have, use them, even in new cars, and put the funding into EVs. If I owned the company, that's the direction I'd take. The EVs will fix the fleet fuel economy issue, and by not spending millions on new engines, you can spend the same money, for a greater return. It's like they are trying so hard to reject the future, they are grasping at straws to continue selling gas suckers. Which, I'm fine with, sell all you want, I just again feel that R&D into them is a wasted opportunity...
 

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