Friday, May 2, 2008

What cars are E85 compatible?

I found a nice list here.

This is a great resource if you're looking for a used E85 compatible vehicle, because it shows what to look for in the VIN number. You can go to and look at VIN numbers to find the E85 cars.

I know that SUV values are dropping like a rock, but there's an E85 compatible Explorer and Moutaineer. You could get into one of those for $15k and run straight E85 with no worries. Of course, combined mileage on E85 is 11 mog, down from 15.

Another good choice is the Ford Taurus. They're dirt cheap. I found an '01 Taurus flex fuel for $6000 on Look for the 8th digit in the VIN to be "2". They sold flex fuel Tauruses 'til '05.

Nobody is advertising these cars as flex fuel. Chances are the dealers don't know the difference. Go in there and steal one!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If one is looking for a little pickup the 2.2L S10's on the list are good flex engines that run at a 12-16% differential E85 to gas. Mine has been flawless but I wished it was a stickshift instead of a auto trans. The stick shift ones are easier on fuel and have more pep. These early GM models had alcohol sensors on them wich was a good set up.

You mention the Taurus- the company has one with 180,000 miles on E85 (believe it or not it still has the original brake rotors on it). The car is like new but some of these Taurus's will need a factory ECU flash to update it for the latest tuning (better starting). The ones that need the flash are many of the '05s and '06's.
Early Daimler 3.3L minivans are very efficient on E85- most folks found they ran at about a 10-12% differential.
Starting in '04 several of the automakers eliminated a lean burn mode in FFV's which was possible with colder burning E85. After that some of the models seemed to be thirstier. My FFV Impala runs at 18-22% more fuel depending on use.
Since I can buy E85 at 20-30% less than NL gas I am ok but I would not be happy with Meir's price.
When I bought my Saab I considered a Benz. I had to educate the dealer on E85 and point out to them which models are flex-fuel. What interested me about the 'Benz is that they are already running higher compression which E85 loves-I was hopeful that they would run at a low differential % mileage but I did not end up buying one. If I would have I am sure E85 would always be cheaper than the 93octane they called for--even if their E85 tune would be less than perfect. I ended buying the '04Saab 9.3 Aero because I loved the looks, the ride, and how Saab is so progressive with highly turbo'ed models in Sweden and the UK. I use E20 in it to avoid buying premium--this works very well for me and sells right now at $3.459- a 20-25 cent discount to 90 octane NL.