Fuel Alternatives: Gas, Ethanol, Plug-In Hybrid & Electric

Fuel Alternatives: Gas, Ethanol, Plug-In Hybrid & Electric


Gas, ethanol, hydrogen and electricity are the four most common fuels being used today. We’re going to look at each fuel individually so we can understand the pros and cons of each one, then we’ll determine which one is best for you.

Fuel Alternatives: Gas, Ethanol, Plug-In Hybrid & Electric


Gasoline is a liquid fuel that is used in internal combustion engines. It is made from crude oil and can be found in most cars, trucks, boats and planes. The United States has been using gasoline for over 100 years now and it is the most common type of fuel used by vehicles today.

Gasoline has many advantages over other types of fuels such as ethanol or electric cars because it’s easy to access (you can buy it at any gas station), cheap to use (you don’t have to pay extra taxes like you would with ethanol) and doesn’t require any special equipment like batteries do with electric vehicles


Ethanol is a renewable, domestically produced alternative to petroleum-based fuels. It can be made from a variety of organic materials, including corn and sugar cane.

Ethanol can be blended with gasoline, or used as a straight fuel in flexible-fuel vehicles (FFVs).

Hydrogen Fuel Cell

Hydrogen is a clean-burning fuel that can be produced from water and electricity, or by splitting hydrocarbons like natural gas. A fuel cell uses electricity to convert hydrogen into electricity, which powers an electric motor.

Fuel cells are more efficient than internal combustion engines because they have fewer moving parts and don’t waste energy in the form of heat–they simply convert it into electricity that powers your car’s battery pack or battery-powered electric motor. They also have no tailpipe emissions because they don’t burn any carbon-based fuels (such as gasoline). The only thing coming out of your tailpipe is water vapor!

However, there are some downsides when it comes to using hydrogen as an alternative vehicle fuel:

Plug-in Hybrid

Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) are a type of hybrid vehicle that can be plugged in to charge the battery pack. PHEVs have both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor, which allows them to operate on both gasoline and electricity. The plug-in aspect allows for extended range and lower emissions when compared with conventional hybrids like the Toyota Prius.

The Chevy Volt is one example of a plug-in hybrid; it has a gasoline engine that can travel up to 38 miles per gallon on gas before switching over to its lithium-ion battery pack for another 300 miles at speeds up to 75 mph or about 10 hours at 25 mph (this will vary depending on driving conditions). The Volt also has an onboard charger that allows you use standard household outlets instead of having access only through public charging stations found in parking garages or along highways where there are few options available nearby where you need them most–like at work during lunch breaks!

Electric Vehicle (EV)

Electric vehicles (EVs) are powered by electricity and have no tailpipe emissions. They can be charged by plugging into a conventional outlet, at a charging station or at home during off-peak hours.

Plug-in hybrid EVs (PHEVs) combine a gas engine with an electric motor and battery pack to provide greater fuel efficiency than traditional cars while also offering all-electric driving capability when needed.

These alternative fuels are reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.

Alternative fuels are reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. They help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution and our dependence on foreign oil.

Fuel Alternatives: Gasoline vs Ethanol

Gasoline and ethanol are two types of alternative fuels that can be used in place of traditional gasoline in vehicles with a flex-fuel engine.

Ethanol is a renewable, domestically produced fuel made from corn (maize), sugar cane and other agricultural products such as wheat straw or switch grasses. It can be blended with gasoline at various levels depending on the type of vehicle you own and its performance needs (i.e., efficiency).


The future of fuel is bright and we are excited to see what comes next. The world is becoming more aware of the importance of conservation and it’s never been easier to make a difference. There are so many ways that you can help conserve our planet by using alternative fuels in your daily life!