Premium Fuel: Is It Worth It?

We’ve all seen it. We drive into a petrol station and you have diesel and unleaded (petrol). Occasionally there is a third and fourth pump for a brand of premium fuel, such as the Shell V-Power Nitro+ Diesel or Unleaded and BP Ultimate. Have you ever wondered what the difference is?

Ever wondered if they are worth the extra cost?

What is the difference?

At the pump, premium petrol can cost between 10-30p extra per litre than standard petrol the majority of us use.

All fuel gets an octane rating and the higher the rating the more efficient it is and it improves the performance as well. The majority of standard fuel brands have an octane rating of 95. However premium fuel usually has an octane rating closer to 98-99. So in theory, premium fuel is more efficient meaning you should last longer on that fuel and it should allow you to accelerate quicker through the improved performance.

Now in practice, how does the premium fuel work?

This will depend upon the car you drive. If you drive a standard car with a regular engine thenyou are less likely to experience the performance benefits of premium fuel, because you do not have the same compression ratios and engine temperatures needed.

However, if you drive a car with a high performance engine that is turbocharged or supercharged and is designed for performance, then you are far more likely to experience those benefits. Higher octane rated fuel suits these engines because the pressures and temperatures are greater and it aids the performance of the car.

How about with the mileage?

Again the high octane rating of premium fuel should ensure it burns more efficiently and therefore delivers more power whilst burning less. However, again it all depends upon the car you are driving. For regular cars, most drivers have reported they barely saw a difference in performance or efficiency. However, when it comes to performance sports cars, drivers did see a small improvement on efficiency and therefore saving money on fuel costs.

If you are tempted by premium fuel, it is advised that you use it at least three times before you can notice any differences. If you do not see any difference after three uses, it is advices that you remain will regular fuel.

Also unlike the competitive nature of regular fuel, premium fuel does largely differ from forecourt to forecourt, so if you find a price that suits you, use that forecourt.

If you are looking for cheaper running costs by using premium fuel to make the fuel last longer, there are other ways of improving your running costs for your car also. Car lease deals on cheap cars are great at offering your lower monthly payments on a new car than buying one on finance or even buying one outright. PCP deals are also a great way of purchasing a car for lower costs monthly, which means you can either save money or stretch your budget to include a better car.



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