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Natural gas sparks emission hopes (2)

By Han Tianyang (China Daily)

08:57, March 11, 2013

Pressure to cut

Under pressure to cut emissions, many local governments are also encouraging use of alternative fuels in public transportation.

"It doesn't require complex techniques or high costs to convert vehicles, but it has an immediate effect in reducing emissions," said John Zeng, director of LMC Automotive Asia Pacific Forecasting.

Natural gas has about the same emissions as China V standard gasoline, so in practice it is a cleaner energy than the poor quality gasoline and diesel used in many parts of the country, said Huang Fanqing, an analyst with consultancy IHS Automotive.

"But a common problem with converted cars is that they may lose efficiency and power when using gasoline," Huang said, adding that dual-fuel cars made by manufacturers have precise adjustments in the fuel system control and perform better than those converted by local shops.

Geely is among a few domestic carmakers that make gasoline-natural gas vehicles. Its spokesman Yang Xueliang said that the company has dual-fuel versions of the Emgrand EC 7 and Gleagle Yuanjing. The majority of sales are from corporate buyers such as taxi companies.

"These cars generally cost 6,000 or 7,000 yuan more than conventional versions," Yang said. "Production is based on orders and we don't have them at the showrooms."

It is unclear how many natural gas vehicles - including converted cars - are on the roads in China, but some estimates put the number around 1.5 million.

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Email|Print|Comments(Editor:HuangBeibei、Zhang Qian)

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