2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid: Hybrid vs. Bi-fuel
April 28, 2011
Bi-fuel vehicles that run on both CNG and gas are big in Italy and other parts of Europe, as well as in emerging markets like Brazil, India and Argentina. These vehicles allow you to toggle between both types of fuel when you're at the pump. You can take advantage of CNG's clean-burning nature when it's convenient, but if you're not near a CNG filling station and need to fuel up, you won't be left stranded -- your car will rise to the occasion by throwing back some good old-fashioned gasoline.
I had an exchange recently with someone who was wondering why these bi-fuel vehicles aren't available here on the retail market -- he'd just gotten back from time spent in Brazil, where bi-fuel cars, trucks, wagons, vans and buses are a common sight. His feeling is that bi-fuel vehicles make a lot more sense than hybrids.
CNG never caught on here -- factors like lack of consumer interest, lack of government support and lack of adequate fuel-station infrastructure all played a part in that. But it seems like bi-fuel capability adds some measure of convenience and makes the whole undertaking a more reasonable proposition.
What are your thoughts as to why gas/CNG bi-fuel vehicles haven't taken off here? Do you think they make more or less sense than hybrids like our Fusion?
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor