The Indy 500 will be fueled from the nation’s Heartland this year.
E85, which is 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent high-octane racing gasoline, will be used for the first time at the Indianapolis 500, and a new report suggest the milestone highlights the need for the general public to embrace alternative fuels.
“The Indianapolis 500 has become a venue to show the feasibility of using alternative fuels, such as E85,” Brent Schutte, a Harris Bank market strategist, wrote. “This is a development with many potential positive implications.”
Schutte wrote the rising cost of gasoline has been spurred by emerging markets, geopolitical risks and the lack of alternatives, and a glut of natural gas and ethanol-based fuels could help provide the public more fueling options.
Ethanol-based fuels have been fiercely debated by the public, industry and politicians over concerns about potential long-term damage to engines. The government plans to introduce E15, which contains 15 percent ethanol, in the next few years.
The public hasn’t embraced natural gas as fuel, despite the low domestic prices.
But Schutte wrote the emerging alternatively-fueled vehicles, such as the Honda GX and Nissan Leaf, don’t look like a fading trend.