Phase 2: Effect of Fuel Octane on the Performance of Four Euro 5 and Euro 6 Gasoline Passenger Cars
Research Octane Number (RON) and Motor Octane Number (MON) are used to describe gasoline combustion antiknock performance under different conditions. Recent literature suggests that MON is less important than RON in modern cars due to a move towards negative k-values which are a factor in the relationship between RON and MON and that a relaxation in the MON specification could improve vehicle performance, while also helping refiners in the production of gasoline. At the same time, for the same octane number change, increasing RON appears to provide more benefit to engine power and acceleration than reducing MON. Some workers have advocated the use of an octane index (OI) which incorporates both parameters instead of either RON or MON to give an indication of octane quality. Previous Concawe work investigated the effect of RON and MON on the power and acceleration performance of two Euro 4 gasoline passenger cars during an especially-designed acceleration test cycle. In phase 1 of this programme which has been previously reported, a large number of fuels blended with and without oxygenates and ranging from around 95 to 103 RON and sensitivities (RON minus MON) up to around 15 were tested. The results were vehicle dependent but in general, showed that sensitivity and octane index appear to be better predictors for improved acceleration times versus either RON or MON alone. In the current study a wider range of newer vehicles (Euro 5+) have been screened on a more limited fuel set and several chosen for further evaluation on the full fuel set. Improvements in fuel efficiency were observed during this testing and additional testing using standardized test cycles was carried out on one vehicle.