LPG Prius Concept Car
4 April 2005
Clean@auto reports from Monaco that the French Propane and Butane Federation (CFBP) and the World LP Gas Association (WLPGA) are showcasing a Prius hybrid modified to burn Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in its engine.
RM Gaz worked with the CFBP and the French Petroleum Institute (IFP) in building the Prius LPG-electric hybrid. The car delivers comparable range to the conventional hybrid, but with fewer emissions.
After all factors are considered, LPG use consumes about 5% more fuel for equivalent performance to gasoline (but it costs less).
In general, LPG yields about 50% less carbon monoxide, 40% less hydrocarbons, 35% less nitrogen oxides (NOx) and 50% less ozone forming potential compared to gasoline. The Toyota Prius LPG prototype emits only 92 g/km of CO2—11.5% less than the gasoline version.
LPG is the generic name for mixtures of propane and butane gases. The chemical composition of LP Gas can vary. Autogas—automotive LPG—generally ranges from a 30% to 99% propane mix. According to Shell, for example, in the UK autogas is predominantly propane, but the rest of Europe more commonly uses a mixture of butane and propane.
LPG is derived from crude oil refining or from natural gas or oil production. Currently, more than 60% of global LP Gas supply comes from natural gas processing plants, but the share varies substantially among regions and countries. In the US, the figure is closer to 70%. With both processes, LP Gas must be separated out from the oil product or natural gas streams.
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