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Fiat's 'Methane Programme' Wins the 'Ecobest 2013' Award


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TURIN, ITALY - October 21, 2013: The Fiat Group has been the leading European original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for methane-fuelled vehicles for more than 15 years: more than 560,000 units sold, comprising Natural Power cars and commercial vehicles.

Autobest's international panel awarded the ʻEcobest 2013' title to Fiat's 'Methane programme', deeming it the solution which is the simplest and most cost-effective and has the lowest environmental impact among fuels available today.

Inaugurated 12 years ago as the first European award dedicated to green products and technology in the automotive sector, the ʻEcobest' title is awarded by a panel comprising 15 specialist journalists, representing the same number of European countries with a total population of approximately 300 million: Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine.

The prestigious ʻEcobest 2013' title confirms Fiat's commitment to continuous research into concrete, effective and accessible technological solutions made available to a vast public so that they can exploit the greatest number of environmental and economic benefits.

In the field of alternative fuels, Fiat considers that methane engines are now the most appropriate technological choice for contributing to the reduction of pollution in urban areas and the limitation of CO2 emissions. Methane engines minimise the most harmful emissions such as particulate (practically reduced to zero), nitrogen oxide and the most reactive hydrocarbons which cause the formation of other pollutants. They also generate 23 per cent less CO2 compared to running on petrol. Therefore, methane is the "cleanest" and cheapest fuel available today and it is also potentially a source of renewable energy thanks to the development of biomethane.

For over 15 years, the Fiat Group has been the leading European original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for methane-fuelled vehicles, the one which offers the widest eco-friendly range with bi-fuel supply (methane/petrol), which accommodates the needs of a broad clientèle, including goods transport professionals: since 1997, the Group has sold over 560 thousand Natural Power cars and commercial vehicles.

Taking pride of place in Fiat's 'Methane' programme is the innovative methane-fuelled 0.9 TwinAir Turbo bi-fuel, which combines the environmental benefits of methane fuel supply with the power and fun at the wheel ensured by Turbo TwinAir technology. This is demonstrated by its maximum power of 80 HP (59 kW) at 5,500 rpm and a maximum torque of no fewer than 140 Nm at just 2,500 rpm. All of this with reduced emissions and fuel consumption: for example, the values recorded with the Fiat Panda TwinAir Turbo Natural Power are 86 g/km of CO2 and 3.1 kg of methane every 100 km/h respectively (combined cycle).

Lastly, mention must be made of the fact that the methane range has certainly contributed significantly to the records acknowledged in the latest research by JATO Dynamics, world leader in automotive consultancy and research. In 2012, for the sixth year running, Fiat proved to be the brand which recorded the lowest level of CO2 emissions in Europe among the best-selling automotive brands, with an average value of 119.8 g/km. And that's not all. Over the last 5 years, Fiat has reduced its average emissions by 13 per cent, which is significantly lower than the average target of 130 g/km set out by the European Union for 2015.