Freedom of choice: E20 ethanol blends take the value crown from gasoline, E10

June 20, 2013 |

E85-smFreedom of choice, it turns out, drives better value for drivers.

The Digest goes in-depth to look at real-world data — and the power of free markets in fossil and alternative fuels.

One of the assumptions in the world of typical comparisons between ethanol and gasoline is that differentials in price and performance work in straight-lines. That trade-offs in price invariably generate equal and opposite trade-offs in performance. But market forces almost never work in straight lines, reflecting perfect markets that quickly find equilibrium points.

Finding the arbitrage – the undervalued stock, the undervalued commodity, the undervalued bond — well, it’s the phenomenon that drives the entire science and art of value-based stock analysis.

So it shouldn’t be entirely surprising that market forces — and even engine performance with given cars running given fuels — often produce surprising results, and create opportunities for the intrepid value-quester willing to look beyond generalizations about fuel economy and fuel prices.

In today’s Digest, we go in-depth with the data — looking at gasoline and ethanol market prices, real-world engine performance, the impact of regional pricing — and putting it all together into a look at real fuel economy – and the surprising winners – via the page links below.

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