Fleet News

VW and Daimler go for biofuel

Two of Europe’s biggest carmakers, Volkswagen and the recently renamed, Daimler, have both acquired a shareholding in Choren Industries, confirming their commitment to developing second generation biofuels for their future models.

In a statement, they said they are committed to the widespread market introduction of BTL (biomass to liquid), a climate-friendly second-generation synthetic fuel.

Volkswagen and Daimler have been investigating potential applications, the economic feasibility and the energy balance of BTL jointly with Choren since 2002.

This move is an important step towards the systematic use of second-generation biofuels and support the further project development of BTL production plants.

Choren is currently building the world’s first commercial industrial scale BTL plant (Beta plant) at its German site. From 2008, the plant is expected to produce some 15,000 metric tonnes of fuel a year - sufficient to meet the annual requirements of 15,000 cars.

“Volkswagen has been calling for and supporting the development and industrial production of second-generation biofuels, known as SunFuels, for a long time,” Dr Wolfgang Steiger, head of group research, powertrains, said.

“Compared with the first generation, these second-generation biofuels can, in fact, as much as triple hectare yields, they do not compete with food production and they help to reduce greenhouse gases by approximately 90%.”

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