Opel’s CNG and LPG technology
Opel is continuously extending its range of model available with LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas). The latest addition to the LPG fleet is the new Opel Corsa. Currently, twelve LPG models are available. In addition, Opel offers three CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) models. Last year more than 26,000 customers decided to buy an Opel LPG or CNG model giving the Rüsselsheim-based carmaker second place in the overall alternative fuel drive rankings. In the first two months of 2015, Opel saw LPG and CNG sales grow by around 35% compared to the same period of 2014, Italy is the most important market.
“Energy efficiency and CO2 reduction are extremely important for us throughout our portfolio,” said Peter Christian Küspert, Vice President Sales & Aftersales Opel Group. “Opel has a wide range of LPG and CNG vehicles and can offer real alternatives no matter what the requirements. The vehicles are not only eco-friendly; they are also especially economical and suitable for everyday use.”
LPG: stable in price and available nationwide
Liquefied Petroleum Gas is already popular because of its advantages. At the beginning of 2015, more than 500,000 with this drive were registered in Germany – which is no real surprise considering that the fuel costs roughly half as much as premium gasoline does. Furthermore, the German state has committed to maintaining the tax advantages for LPG vehicles until at least 2018. Liquefied Petroleum Gas is currently available at 7,000 gas stations in Germany and more than 35,000 gas stations throughout Europe. And more important the environment benefits just as much as the pocket does. LPG vehicles, with their mixture of butane and propane emit up to 15 percent less carbon dioxide and up to 80 percent less nitrogen oxides than cars with a conventional drive.
Opel currently offers the largest LPG portfolio of any German carmaker with 12 models, those being: ADAM, Corsa (three and five-door), Meriva, Astra (five-door, sedan and Sports Tourer), Mokka, Zafira Tourer and Insignia (four-door, five-door and Sports Tourer).
Opel put faith in CNG drive
Opel’s CNG ecoFLEX engines have been optimized for use with natural gas, biogas or any mixture of both. Natural gas and biogas are both cheaper than gasoline or diesel. In addition, the German government has committed to tax advantages for natural gas as a fuel until 2018. CNG driven vehicles emit up to 25 percent less CO2 and up to 80 percent less NOx and are free of benzene and soot particles.
The current Opel CNG ecoFLEX offer comprises three vehicles. The Combo 1.4 CNG Turbo ecoFLEX is available as a passenger car or commercial van. The 88 kW/120 hp engine needs 4.9 kilograms of natural gas per 100 kilometers, which is equivalent to 134 grams of CO2 per kilometer.
The Zafira Tourer also features in Opel’s CNG range. The 1.6 CNG ecoFLEX Zafira Tourer with its optional seven seats has a turbocharged engine which delivers 110 kW/150 hp. With fuel consumption of 4.7 kilograms (7.2 m3) high-grade natural gas per 100 kilometers over the combined cycle, the Zafira Tourer 1.6 CNG ecoFLEX emits 129 g/km CO2.
LPG and CNG installation ex works
All Opel LPG and CNG variants are created directly in the plant and safety plays an especially important role during the development. The Opel checklist includes special crash tests for the gas tank and further components housed in collision-protected zones and perfectly integrated in the safety structure of the vehicle. As the gas tanks are fitted in the spare wheel well or under the vehicle floor, the full everyday suitability and loading volume of the vehicles are maintained. Customers receive their LPG or CNG car with technology of the typical Opel standards ex works.