March 7, 2002


Success of duel-fuel vehicles hindered by inadequate refuelling infrastructure – NHTSA

Washington, D.C. – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released a report on the implementation of the Alternative Motor Fuels Act of 1988 (AMFA), which encourages the development and use of methanol, ethanol and natural gas, and promotes the production of alternative fuel vehicles.

The NHTSA in consultation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Energy (DOE)) evaluated the dual-fueled vehicle incentive program and provided a report to Congress with a preliminary conclusion on whether to extend the program beyond the 2004 model year.

The report concluded that the AMFA CAFE credit program has been successful in stimulating a significant increase in the availability of alternative fuel vehicles, with over a million of these vehicles – primarily flexible fuel vehicles that can run on gasoline and on a blend of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline (E85) – currently on the road. However, due to the lagging development of the alternative fuel infrastructure and the cost of E85, the vast majority of dual-fuel vehicles rarely operate on alternative fuel.

Given the mixed results of the program to date, the report concludes that it would be prudent for federal agencies, Congress, industry, and other interested stakeholders to identify additional programs and authorities that could contribute to expanding the infrastructure and achieving greater use of alternative fuels in dual-fuel vehicles that receive the CAFE credit.

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