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Suffering motorists switch to LPG

News release June 4, 2004

Suffering motorists switch to LPG

Sales of automotive LPG are well up as suffering motorists look for cheaper fuel options.

“Installers report that enquiries about converting LPG vehicles have increased by 50 percent since the petrol price jumped,” the executive director of the LPG Association, Peter Gilbert, said.

“One Auckland installer has increased conversion numbers by 80 percent. Industry sources also confirm applications for LPG fleet cards are up substantially.”

Mr Gilbert said the economics are very good for LPG. A litre of the fuel costs around 65 cents for higher mileage users. This compares to unleaded petrol at $1.23 a litre and diesel at 76 cpl plus road user charges.

A commercial driver doing 60,000 km pa will save about $3,500 a year based on current retail fuel prices. This means the vehicle conversion cost is recovered in about 12 months.

A 30,000 km pa motorist buying a dedicated LPG Falcon will save about $1,250 a year compared to the equivalent petrol car. The LPG Falcon costs around $1,500 more than the petrol version.

Mr Gilbert said some LPG companies offer interest-free loans to assist motorists finance conversions. Industry figures show loan numbers have doubled since petrol prices started tracking up and applications for LPG fuel cards have also risen sharply.

“Motorists are suffering. They want cheaper fuel alternatives and LPG is the best bet. It’s half the price of petrol, over 600 service stations sell it around the country and there is no shortage of LPG.

“The technology is also extremely sophisticated. Latest developments include gas injection systems which offer improved performance and economy, and easier installation.”

The Police are big users of LPG as are many taxi companies and higher mileage commercial fleets.


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