CNG cheaper than all other energy sources
Cars driving on CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) are cheaper than cars using petrol, diesel or electricity, as is the conclusion of a new study of CREG, the Commission for the Regulation of Electricity and Gas. All simulations show that gas is cheaper than all other kinds of fuel.
Cars on gas cheaper than electric or hybrid vehicles
The price difference in fuel consumption goes up to 35 to 75% compared to petrol and diesel cars, 20% compared to electric vehicles and 60% compared to hybrid cars, driving on a combination of petrol and electricity.
The car itself on gas is on average 200 euro more expensive than a conventional diesel car, and 2.400 euro more than a petrol car, so they’re cheaper than an electric or a hybrid vehicle. An electric VW Golf, for instance, costs 15.000 euro more.
Only 10.960 CNG cars
Nevertheless, cars driving on gas are not very popular. In Belgium at the end of April of this year only 10.960 of them were driving around, compared to more than 5,7 million registered cars, whereas the European automotive sector hopes that their market share will be 12% by 2030 (and 20 to 30% for trucks on gas).
There are two possible explanations for the poor success: 1) the rare gas stations, 96 in Belgium, of which only 14 in Wallonia; and 2) the limited choice in cars on gas, less than 30 models, mostly German brands and Fiat. Another possible explanation is the bad image, for which the bad reputation of the first generation of gas, LPG, is to blame.
Cars driving on CNG produce 75 to 90% fewer emissions of particles and nitrogen oxides than petrol and diesel cars, CO2 emissions are 7 to 16% lower and, what’s more, the engine makes half the noise of a conventional one.
“CNG is a relevant choice, economically and ecologically speaking, for private cars as well as for lease cars”, concludes CREG. Lease companies, however, still think that diesel cars are the best option, but in contrast to what they believe residual value of diesel cars will collapse in the coming years.
Not everybody is happy with the promotion of CNG, though. “Today CNG might be a better option for consumers than a diesel or petrol car”, says Mathias Bienstman of the federation for a better environment (Bond Beter Leefmilieu). “But we have to realize that gas still is a fossil fuel. If we want to meet the set climate goals by 2030, we have to buy 100% green cars.”
“Authorities have to realize that the life span of cars on gas is limited, Bienstman concludes. “In a few years the electric car will break through and authorities should better prepare Belgium’s infrastructure for it.”