In 2013, the average cost of fuel is around £1.40 per litre for petrol and an average of £1.47 per litre for diesel. Now although we may have become accustomed to the staggering rises in fuel that 2013 has witnessed, compare these prices to those just five years ago when the average cost stood at a shocking £1.04 per litre of petrol and just £1.14 per litre for diesel.
Here we can see the dramatic rises that Britain has undergone in fuel costs over the past few years and it is no surprise that more and more alternative fuel vehicles are being introduced onto the market. But the question still remains? Are these vehicles fully prepared to completely replace our fossil fuels? Here is a summary of three of the upmost developments in fuel alternatives:
- Electric – It may surprise you to hear that electric vehicles have in fact been around since the early 1890’s and that it was an electric vehicle that was the first to break the speed record of the 100km/h. Now, although current owners of these vehicles may enjoy lower running costs the initial cost for one of these vehicles is usually much higher than the asking price of a petrol vehicle. Not only this, electric vehicles also require the time to charge which can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 23 hours to charge them fully.
However, in saying this we must remember that the power plants that are used in order to generate the level of electricity to run these cars probably burn fossil fuels to do so. These cars may seem like a great alternative to petrol and diesel cars though unfortunately they don’t quite cut it as a complete alternative to the use of fossil fuels.
- Natural Gas – Natural gas is fantastic for many things, including cars. Not only does it produce 45% less pollutants it also costs less making it ideal for those struggling in today’s society. Furthermore, existing vehicles can be converted in order to be able to run on this alternative making a seemingly perfect fuel alternative to that of petrol or diesel.
However, and here comes the downfall, the tanks required to make a car run on just natural gas are considerably oversized and although many vehicles on the road currently use natural gas as a fuel alternative, it has yet to witness a wide-scale adoption in order to successfully record efficiency.
- Compressed Air – These motors have been on the road since the 1920’s, however, they are rarely seen in comparison to fuel and diesel tanks. One of the biggest benefits of compressed air tanks is that there is no immediate risk of fire and absolutely no need for car cooling systems such as air conditioning. This means that ultimately these motors can be found significantly cheaper than that of a petrol vehicle.
Sadly, a disadvantage of these vehicles is that they can take up to four hours to fully refuel and similar to the natural gas tanks, take up a superfluous amount of space. Not only this, they also have a limited speed with the average top speed being of around 100km/h and a maximum range limit of 80km.
So as you can see there are many benefits and disadvantages of the fuel alternatives listed above, however, don’t fret, as there are many other ways you can save on fuel without having to change your vehicle or initial fuel nature such as fleet tracking and HGV tracking systems. These systems can help to monitor your fuel consumption levels and preserve a satisfactory level of consumption per month by encouraging your drivers to follow road safety rules such as speed limits.