Over the past year or so, there’s been growing talk about synthetic fuels potentially saving the internal combustion engine. And there’s some merit to that. If we can make synthetic fuel, that will run in any gasoline powered engine without modification, which will be made from recycled organic material, we’d be recycling the CO2 in the air and helping to reduce global emissions. Hell, even Porsche’s jumped in on it and is making its own synthetic fuels. Not Audi, though. Audi’s taking a hard pass on anything but EVs. At least for cars.
“Synthetic fuels are just a bridging technology for us,” said Audi technical development officer Oliver Hoffman to Top Gear, recently. “For other industries – boats and aeroplanes etc – this can be a solution for the future. Our future, and to be honest the future of personal mobility, will be battery electric vehicles.”
The problem, according to Hoffman, isn’t the synthetic fuel itself but making it in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way. Hydrogen fuel is also included in that, as hydrogen fuel is often used to power electric vehicles, producing zero emissions while also being faster to refuel. Again, though, it requires the emission of CO2 to run the plants that make the hydrogen.
“Hydrogen technology is not rocket science. We are able to develop this technology, but the problem is getting green hydrogen.” he said. “The most efficient way for us to reduce CO2 emissions is battery electric mobility.”
Ironically, this mirrors what Tesla’s Elon Musk has said. Even Audi’s German neighbor, BMW, is working heavily on hydrogen fuel as an alternative to both gasoline and electricity. Not Audi, though. The four rings are steadfast in their pursuit of electrification. Will that pay off in the end? Unclear but at least Audi has a plan and is sticking to it.
[Source: Top Gear]
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