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Fuel Saving: OctaFuel Slams AA Over Comments


OctaFuel Slams AA Over Comments That Fuel Saving Devices Don’t Work – Calls On Government To Step In

OctaFuel New Zealand – suppliers and installers of retrofitted hybrid fuel cells, and pioneers of retrofitted regenerative braking and heat to energy recovery modules in motorcars – believes the AA has abused its position as a trusted source of credible information by suggesting to the General Public that all fuel saving devices don’t work, when the truth is they do not undertake independent testing of fuel saving devices.

Says Michael Fresnel, Co-Founder, OctaFuel: “When OctaFuel makes public statements, we have to ensure they are entirely factual, because we know we’ll be held to account – but it seems that when a big entity like the AA makes statements, their statements are taken as gospel, because people trust the AA.” OctaFuel New Zealand says the AA should be ashamed of itself – and questions why the AA has taken this position.

“Initially OctaFuel supported the AA’s position on warning the general public to be wary about fuel saving devices – it’s just as important to OctaFuel that kiwis are careful and examine these technologies thoroughly,” says Michael Fresnel, Co-Founder, OctaFuel New Zealand. “But we simply can’t ignore some of the unfounded statements issued by the AA over the last month and a half. It seems the AA has gone on the attack – and where is their evidence?” Michael states the AA’s stance has “severely damaged the reputation of OctaFuel – a small NZ-owned business that is very genuine and determined in the research and development being undertaken”. This, he says, is the marked difference between a small technology innovator like OctaFuel and the likes of a corporate group like the AA, who he believes seem to “make sweeping statements with none of their own evidence or research and development undertaken whatever – and gotten away with it”.

Fresnel continues: “Calls dropped from 50 a day to almost none for a month after their attack on fuel-saving devices – and may have cost my business as much as $150,000 in lost revenue over the last month. I had to lay off staff. That’s pretty tough on a small NZ-owned business.” Michael also found those “few that have called were suspicious, but after examining our technology for themselves, many have proceeded.” He hopes many more New Zealanders will take a look at OctaFuel’s technology and decide for themselves.

Says Michael Fresnel: “I didn’t want to condemn the AA publically – but they have twice declined my offer of independently testing our devices or even taking a look at our research. They are not interested – but they carry on issuing blanket statements worded in such a way that they don’t refer specifically to OctaFuel, while still discrediting our work publically by inference, which is hardly fair – given the export potential of the OctaFuel technology.” Ultimately, Fresnel says, it’s the future of hydrogen in New Zealand that suffers.

“Spreading doubt in the industry hampers research and development and simply slows down the process of moving New Zealand towards a hydrogen-based economy and away from fossil fuel reliance,” says Fresnel.

“OctaFuel’s long-term goal is to install the first hydrogen pumps in Australasia here down-under in mid 2009. But that won’t happen as long as organisations like the AA make such sweeping and unfounded statements, which shake the confidence of everyday New Zealanders to the point where they won’t even make a phone call to OctaFuel, let alone consider installing our technology.”

Michael calls on the government to step in and start testing fuel saving devices – as the USA does. “The government has just released a report on the cost of fuel in New Zealand – why not take the next logical step and commit resources to the independent testing of devices that save fuel and benefit the environment?”
Others in the industry agree with OctaFuel’s position. Ian Cornelius, CEO and founder of Fuelstar, manufactures a fuel-saving device that is approved by the most stringent test authority in the world, the California Air Resource Board. Says Ian: “The AA is under an obligation to provide authoritative proven information, not merely state as fact opinions about fuel-saving devices. They do this in spite of the fact that there is extensive documented proof that Fuelstar combustion catalyst units provide significant fuel reductions. This irrefutable proof goes far beyond any technical information the AA can produce on the topic. “In addition, various new car and truck manufacturers have approved the Fuelstar after extensive testing by them. While AA may choose not to support fuel-saving devices, for the AA to attack such products without testing is taking things too far.”

Mr Cornelius is so concerned at the impact the AA’s “unfounded statements” has had on his business that he has written a letter to the NZAA requesting that they either “endorse (Fuelstar’s) product or advise why they won’t do so”.

Michael Fresnel also calls on the AA to do the right thing – by apologising and standing corrected. “People get it wrong sometimes – we’re only human. I hope this announcement will prick the conscience of the AA, and that they’ll do the right thing, and publically apologise for the damage they’ve done to businesses like OctaFuel by categorically stating that fuel saving devices don’t work without having any evidence to back that statement up.

They’re a big player and their opinion is valued by many New Zealanders – including me, up until this unreasonable attack on fuel-saving research and development in New Zealand.” Ian Cornelius, of Fuelstar, agrees. "We urge the NZAA to admit they were wrong, and throw their weight to assist the interests of the New Zealand motoring public and the commercial users of internal combustion engine equipment," he said.

"Given the fuel situation we all face, the time has come for New Zealanders to be told the truth". OctaFuel New Zealand manufactures and installs a range of proven fuel-saving devices, including retrofitted regenerative braking, peltier heat-recovery to electricity devices, hi-flo catalytic converters and air filters, and Hybrid Fuel Cells. For more information about OctaFuel, visit Fuelstar Fuel Combustion catalysts have the ability to generate more power, save fuel and reduce Greenhouse Gas to an extent unrivalled by other products and technologies. In hundreds of thousands of installations spanning more than 15 years, Fuelstar has been proved to achieve an improvement in fuel consumption by 12% to 15% and frequently more and to improve power output and torque by 5% and more. For more information about Fuelstar visit


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