Bad for the body, good for the environment?
While most people seem to be concerned with the long term benefits of electric and hydrogen options, let's not forget that there are some other pretty ingenious solutions to powering the engines that run our vehicles. Remember how health experts have always dismissed grease and any waste products from cooking oil as a big no-no for those looking to stay healthy? Well, they're definitely not good for the body, but they're now good enough for Ford's Transit vans. That is if you happen to have one with a diesel engine. Ford has now approved the use of hydrotreated vegetable oils (HVO) in its Transit vans, the fuel is basically based on waste oils such as cooking oil and other byproducts of the cooking process in restaurants and kitchens.
Gallery: 2020 Ford Transit
These HVOs are said to produce 90% fewer greenhouse gases and produce less nitrogen oxide (NOx) than regular diesel since the fuel contains no sulphur or oxygen. Additionally, HVOs have a number of waste animal fats and fish oil, helping diesel engines start more easily in colder temperatures. In fact, a number of companies already in Europe have been collecting used oils from establishments and households, with even more effort being put into boosting biodiesel production. With the HVO on sale at a number of stations in Europe, the fuel has already been adopted by many fleet operators, further increasing their environment-friendly initiatives.
The best part? If a vehicle runs low on HVO and it's not available at the next station, the driver can fill up with conventional diesel – the fuels can mix in the tank without causing problems. Ford has also made sure that HVO was thoroughly tested in the Transit van's 2.0-liter EcoBlue engine, making sure no further modifications are needed and servicing wouldn't be an issue; just fill up and go.