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DC Insider: Ethanol boosters attempt to distort the facts concerning E15 and motorcycles

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The American Motorcyclist Association has been working to educate its members -- and the entire motorcycle community -- on the need for an independent scientific test on the effects of E15 fuel on motorcycle and all-terrain vehicle engines and fuel systems.

However, E15 (a gasoline formulation that contains up to 15 percent ethanol by volume) is already in the marketplace and inadvertent misfueling is a serious concern for our members. Moreover, E15 use can void manufacturers’ warranties. Because of these concerns, and in the absence of the independent testing that we seek, the AMA is opposed to the availability of E15.

If you have been reading social media comments from ethanol boosters, you wouldn’t hear this. Instead, you read that the AMA is “back 2 old tricks fighting E15’s existence” or “just read the pump label.”

This rhetoric doesn’t help inform motorcyclists. It just adds to the confusion. Perhaps this is their goal.

But the pro-E15 rhetoric really misses the key concern of the motorcycling community, which is that 100 percent of the 22 million motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles on the road and trail in the U.S. today are not designed to run ethanol blends higher than 10 percent.

Many older machines favored by vintage enthusiasts have problems with any ethanol in the fuel.

And yet the opportunity to misfuel and damage an engine with higher ethanol blends, such as E15, is very real.

The bottom line for the AMA is this: Motorcyclists simply want safe fuels available at all fuel retailers and measures employed by retailers to ensure they cannot inadvertently put unsafe fuels in their tanks.

Please be sure to share this with your fellow motorcyclists to counter the spin coming from the E15 lobby group that does not have your best interests at heart. The AMA is your voice.

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