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Biodiesel will fuel Volkswagen entry

Biodiesel will fuel Volkswagen entry

One of the two Volkswagen entries in the EnergyWise Rally 2002 will be running on Biodiesel made from rapeseed oil, demonstrating the use of a fuel that has low climate change impact. The 1.9 litre Golf TDI is being entered in partnership with the Massey University Centre for Energy Research and will be driven by Prof. Ralph Sims, Director of the Centre.

Although it won’t be eligible for class or overall awards because the fuel is not currently commercially available in New Zealand, the Golf is expected to produce a remarkably low figure for CO2 emissions, which will enhance the car’s rating under the environmental formula used for the event.

Volkswagen has been a big supporter of the use of Biodiesel, which is now widely available throughout Europe. Since 1996 Volkswagen has approved the use of Biodiesel in all their diesel models including the high-performance TDI models, and was one of the first manufacturers to maintain engine warranties with Biodiesel fuel. Biodiesel can be produced from various animal and/or vegetable oils by simple chemical processes and can be used either by itself or in blends with normal pump diesel.

The non-mineral fuel has proved to reduce many of the concerning tailpipe emissions from diesel vehicles and is virtually free of sulphur. The carbon dioxide emissions are reabsorbed during photosynthesis by the next energy crop grown, sequestrating the carbon component of the fuel. Biodiesel from this source could be viewed as being largely renewable.

“This event is a great opportunity for us to demonstrate Volkswagen’s worldwide commitment to the environment,” said Dean Sheed, Volkswagen Division Manager for European Motor Distributors. “We are delighted to have the chance to work with Prof. Sims and his team and we are confident that the Golf will be one of the most talked-about cars on the Rally.”

Volkswagen’s other entry is a 2.5 litre V6 Passat TDI.

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