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Old 09-10-2011, 08:45 PM   #1
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there was talk about gas and ethanol. instead of highjacking the thread, i am starting a new one. but basic and hopefully simple question and answer. what is the best gas to put in your boxster? i assume premium. additives or no? is one gas company better than another? is there any i should avoid?
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Old 09-11-2011, 09:48 AM   #2
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The simplest answer is straight 93 octane (no ethanol). But it's never that simple.

You could run 87 octane regular gas in your P-car, but the computer in your car would sense it and dial back the timing. This would cost you horsepower.

It also depends on what's available in your area. A few places here in Omaha sell 93 octane but it contains 10% ethanol. There's a BP station near me that sells 91 octane w/o ethanol and that's what I buy. If you're buying your gas from a convience store, it probably doesn't matter which one because chances are they're all getting their gas from the same supplier. Companies like Chevron (techron) and Shell (nitrogen) have additives in the gas which may make them more attractive to buyers or it's all just marketing hype - you decide. No Chevrons in Omaha but prior to Shell going ethanol, I purchased my gas there. Did I notice any difference after going to BP? No. As far as I can tell, she still runs clean.

And if you have choices, then you can let other issues (like politics) fuel your decision. Some people may never buy gas from BP after what happened in the Gulf last yr. My take is we had all the regulations we needed in place but our govt (the current and past) chose to ignore and enforce them, so I don't have a problem with BP. Forum members in Gulf coast states may have a different opinion. We don't have any CITGOs in Omaha but I'd push my empty Boxster 5 miles uphill to avoid buying a gallon of their gas. I don't want to turn this into a political thread, just saying if you have options then you decide where to buy. At the moment we still live in the greatest county on earth and we have the freedom to decide. My choice may be different than yours - that doesn't mean I'm right and you're wrong. Maybe you don't want to invest this much thought into where you buy your gas. That's fine too.

As far as avoiding something, the only thing I would suggest is a station off the beaten path that may not sell a lot of premium fuel. It should be safe, but who knows? Better to buy from a station that keeps their inventory fresh.

Hope this helped you with your question.
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Old 09-11-2011, 02:21 PM   #3
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i have taken something along the lines of 10 or so long-distance road trips in the boxster and have used diverse brands of gasoline / gas shops - exxon, valero, QT, shell, BP, sinclair, murphy, chevron, conoco, sunoco, pilot, hess, sheetz... to name a few

personally i prefer exxon (though i have political objections, i "feel" the gas is higher quality - go figure) but 80% of the gas my car gets is from the local convenience store - GetGo (a division of Giant Eagle, the local grocery store) and i honestly could not tell you one tank from the next in the way the car performs as long as it's 93...

(though once i believe i got a fairly "bad" tank somewhere in oklahoma as the car REALLY did not seem to like it - very low MPG, lower "power"...)

my preferences over the years have been for:
1. exxon
2. sunoco
3. bp
4. whatever else is available
5. texaco (pre-chevron)
"Speed has never killed anyone, suddenly becoming stationary... that's what gets you."
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Old 09-11-2011, 08:09 PM   #4
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I have never had any one brand that gave me better performance/reliability than another. Some will say stick with the high-end brands like Texaco, Exxon, Chevron (your region may vary) because they have all the additives. I have found that using Bradley and any other "stop-and-shop" gas has always netted me the same results. I now usually buy gas from the same station that I have a relationship with because good service and friendly acquaintances are important to me. It has nothing to do with the brand.

And yes - run high-octane gas as much as possible.
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Old 09-11-2011, 08:24 PM   #5
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my car has seen Shell every time since I took ownership. I can definitely feel my car runs better with Shell (93) than all others. Exxon would be my next choice if I were stranded
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:34 AM   #6
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As I am a fat old man with a rear end to match, I cannot feel a difference in power from one brand to another of those who are available in the sticks, but as a cheap bas**rd I can tell you that I get a higher MPG using Shell than a cheaapie gas station. Ed
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:00 AM   #7
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Shell 91 octane, zero ethanol and that's what other Pcar/Fcar owners in my region use as well.
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:06 AM   #8
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I agree with Ekam's choice and use Shell 91 whenever possible. There doesn't seem to be anything with a higher octane rating here in Canada, at least not in my part of it.

Out in the countryside I find most Shell stations only sell regular (87) so I have been getting premium from the FasGas stations and sometimes Extra Foods, both of which buy their gas from Esso. It seems to work just as well as Shell, as far as I can tell anyway. I plan my routes and fuel stops around the availability of acceptable fuel. Sometimes i take an extra 5 gallons of premium with me.

I never knowingly use anything with ethanol in it.
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:35 AM   #9
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+ 1 on Shell 93. There used to be a station in Stewartstown, Pa that had a big banner boasting "No Ethanol" but the place may have changed hands, so YMMV !
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:36 AM   #10
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You can't always tell the ethanol content by brand. Fuel is mixed as it comes out of the tanker. In some places with less regulation, 2 shell stations in the same town may have different mixes (from what I’ve gleaned). The same tanker may also service different station (brands).

The problem with ethanol is that it technically is the correct octane but it burns slower. Think of real 91 oct fuel going “pop” in your cylinder and high ethanol going fizzzzzle in your cylinder. Hotter and less bang (power).

In California everything switches to “winter formula” of 10% ethanol and is legally to be clearly marked. The rest of the year, who knows knows.

I sometimes mix with 100 oct race fuel which is also another crap shoot. It to can be mixed down to with ethanol. Most likely still better than 91,93, etc. Another trick is adding Toluene which is very high, good octane and is a regular component in gasoline in smaller doses (so it doesn’t damage any thing).

Just a little background to further confuse the issue (grin)

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Old 09-17-2011, 06:01 AM   #11
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There are a few place around Atlanta that sell 100 octane, no ethanol gas, and a few with just no ethanol, but it is expensive. Most gas in GA contains ethanol. Not sure what side of town you're on, but you can do a dogpile.com search and find the ones nearest you.
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