One of the things Saab USA have most likely been waiting for before bringing BioPower to the market is for E85 to become more available in California. Cali’s got an economy bigger then most countries all on its own. It’s a big market and Saab would be more comfortable knowing that some people will actually be able to make use of their BioPower technology there. Or maybe they don’t care at all and I’m just saying that. Anyway….
Today, GM sponsored a two-hour E85 sale at one of the few public outlets where you can purchase E85 in the whole state. And given that it was E85 that was on sale, it was appropriate that they’d charge just 85 cents for it. Well, 85.9 to be exact.
1985 Gripen headed on down to fill up his flex-fuel company car:
What a freakin’ nightmare that was. The good news: yes, I got my company a tank of fuel for only 85 cents a gallon. The bad news: the line was over an hour and a half long! The line wrapped around the block and backed onto San Vicente quite a ways down.
So totally NOT worth it. If I’d known it would be such a wait I wouldn’t have stayed, but it was one of those things where I kept thinking, “well, I’ve been waiting THIS long, it’d be a shame to leave now…”
I got into the line at 12:20 and got up to the pump at 1:55. I drove out at 2:00. There was still a long line of cars when I left. I was so relieved to be done with it that I left instead of stick around and see if there was a riot when the station stopped selling at 2:00pm!
All the suits there, who I assume work for GM, looked giddy about the turnout but I kept wondering if the whole experience being so stressful now makes people associate buying ethanol with waiting in line! At 85 cents a gallon you’re going to get a lot of takers. At $2.97 a gallon, I’m not so sure.
There was also a big article about E85 yesterday in the LA Times.
Gripen spoke to the reporter on the phone for around 40 minutes a few weeks ago while whe was putting the story together, supposedly providing background and his piece of public opinion on the fuel. Unfortunately his contribution was left out in the final edit.
In other news on E85 in the US – There’s going to be 20 new E85 outlets opening in Texas soon.