1991-10-01

THE EFFECTS OF GASOLINE OCTANE QUALITY ON VEHICLE ACCELERATION PERFORMANCE - A CRC STUDY 912394

A study was conducted under the auspices of the Coordinating Research Council, Inc. (CRC) to assess the potential effects of gasoline octane quality on vehicle acceleration performance. Twelve participating laboratories, representing both the oil and the automotive industries, tested a total of 182 vehicles as part of the 1989 CRC Octane Number Requirement Survey. The vehicles consisted of 78 with electronic knock control systems (knock sensors) and 104 without. All testing was performed using the 1989/1990 CRC FBRU fuel series. The results showed that acceleration performance of vehicles with knock sensors was significantly affected by gasoline octane quality. Octane effects on acceleration performance were most pronounced at maximum-throttle (detent) conditions and at octane levels below the vehicle octane requirement for trace audible knock; however, some knock-sensor vehicles did show improved acceleration performance with fuels at octane levels above the octane number requirement. Acceleration performance in non-knock-sensor vehicles was unaffected by octane quality.

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