Sweden takes the lead in the race to reduce CO2
Sales of bioethanol cars reach 100,000.
The market for E85 flex-fuelled cars is booming. Saab, the largest seller of flex-fuel cars in Europe, recently delivered the 100,000th flex-fuel car in the Swedish market – a Saab 9-3 BioPower. In fact, Saab BioPower models have been the main contributor to Sweden's leading position in the switch to renewable fuels within Europe.
It took seven years to sell the first 300 flex-fuel cars in Sweden. Six years later there were 50,000 on the roads. An additional 50,000 flex-fuel cars have been sold during the last 15 months alone – proof that the market is truly expanding. A joint strategy between central and local government, fuel producers, retailers and car manufacturers has been a key to this success.
Johan Bergstad, a private car buyer from Stockholm, recently became the owner of the 100,000th bioethanol car: "In addition to the environmental factors, buying a flex-fuelled car offers many economical benefits. Tax reductions, no congestion charges and a lot of free parking certainly make a difference."
"Bioethanol is one of several solutions for a more sustainable future," says Anna Langenius, Manager for BioPower at Saab. "The infrastructure is in place, the technology is established and we consider it to be the best solution available today to slow down the increase of CO2 in the atmosphere." The first Saab 9-5 BioPower car was launched in 2005. Since then, Saab has experienced a rapid growth in sales of its BioPower models. The right timing and a unique product offer gave Saab an important head-start. Benefits of Saab's turbo technology makes it possible to offer an engine that produces up to 30 hp more when driving on bioethanol E85, whilst also significantly lowering overall CO2 impact on a source-to-wheel basis, compared to petrol.
"We know that consumers will gladly embrace new environmental technology as long as they are not penalized or inconvenienced for doing so," concludes Anna Langenius.