November 10, 2003

VW develops new engines for synthetic fuels

Weyhausen, Germany – Volkswagen is developing engines powered by synthetic fuels based on biomass. In ten to fifteen years time, says the company, these engines will unite the fuel-consumption benefits of today’s diesel engines with the emissions potential of spark-ignition engines.

At a conference on the subject of “Biofuels – the emergence of a new industry” in Weyhausen near Wolfsburg, Matthias Rabe, Head of Group Research, explained the company’s strategy: “With the new Combined Combustion System, we can clearly see how immense the efficiency potential of the internal combustion engine is. This will enable us to fully reconcile individual mobility with the requirements of protecting the environment and climate. We can do this with new synthetic fuels currently being developed on the basis of natural gas and biomass. This process will close the carbon dioxide cycle.”

“The use of biofuels is a central subject for our future development activities. They hold the promise of environmental, social and economic sustainability”, explained Klaus Volkert, Chairman of the Volkswagen AG Group and General Works Councils. “They will enable us to reduce emissions and conserve resources even during production.

They will secure employment potential in agriculture and contribute to the reduction of agricultural subsidies. In this way, these innovative fuels will support the viability of rural areas and provide a link between agricultural and industrial production. For this reason I consider it to be essential for biofuels to be granted a significant tax advantage over conventional fuels.”

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