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I have owned my 2001 P38 4.6L Vogue for ten years. I have suffered many of the usual P38 problems with EAS, remote receiver, crankshaft position sensor etc but nothing major until it started overheating last year. It's either the head gasket or the cylinder liners but was fixed with some liberal application of Steel Seal. This fixed the overheating problem with combustion gases entering the cooling system but put a load of sludge into the radiator & heater matrix which led to more overheating problems & a non-functioning heater.

I was very happy to meet @Gilbertd in person as he lives only 10 miles from where I work. He introduced me to this forum & has been doing some work on my car. The Nanocom fixed some minor irritating problems with the headlight warning & interior light not working. The new radiator has fixed the overheating but the leaking sludged up heater matrix proved more challenging so has been removed & bypassed for the moment so I don't have a heater at present but in summer this isn't a problem. Replacing the heater matrix requires complete removal of the dashboard & is a 2-3 day job that will have to wait until next month. The AC has been recharged so I can be icey cool when it's hot outside.

I acquired the car as part of a divorce settlement ten years ago. My initial plan had been to sell it it but after I drove it for a week or two I fell in love with it. It's still the nicest car I have ever driven. I love the driving position, the visibility, the manoeuvrability, the performance etc The fuel consumption of 18mpg is the price I have to pay for driving around in a £50,000 car. It's not my daily driver but I do use it regularly. We have had countless journeys to & from our cottage in Brittany heavily loaded in both directions. We are now resident in France & spend over half our time there so the P38 has been re-registered on French plates. There was a one off cost of registration of €500 but there is now no equivalent of road tax in France so I save over £300 each year. The equivalent of the MOT (Côntrole Technique) is every two years. I considered an LPG conversion but first I am going to experiment with E85 (85% ethanol 15% petrol) which is available in France at half the price of petrol.

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Welcome!

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Welcome Nigel but E85 ? Eeeeek !

Seriously no doubt you know that the recent change in UK petrol from E5 to E10 has upset the Classic Car Community quite a bit, Ethanol is Hygroscopic and so - potentially - leads to water in the fuel pipes and thus corrosion, and it also attacks rubber pipes. (Some of this may just be over-reacting but at 85% these issues may actually be quite real). Not sure quite how it would affect Emissions either.... Keep us posted !

PS: Looks like you get 33% less 'bang for your buck too': https://www.dynojet.com/blog/e85-fuel-more-power-or-more-problems

PPS: And it gets worse..... https://fuelandfriction.com/weekend-warrior/e85-dont-do-it-unless-you-know/

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We spoke about this and I considered bunging some E85 in mine last weekend when I was in France. The only thing that stopped me from doing it is that one of my lambda sensors gives an open circuit heater fault (P1187) all the time so one bank runs open loop. It remained after I replaced the lambda sensor so it is obviously a wiring or connector problem but ordinarily that doesn't matter as the petrol in the tank is treated the same as the spare wheel, for use in emergencies only, and I run solely on LPG. But that stopped me from trying it, or at least a sizeable percentage mix of E85 and petrol, as not having a lambda sensor signal to allow it to run in Closed Loop, may not have been such a good idea. However, Land Rover say that all their vehicles built since 1994, so from the beginning of P38 production are E10 compatible so that means that the fuel system is made from materials that aren't going to suffer. As E85 has been around in France for quite some time now, P38 owners over there have tried it and report no problems with performance or driveablity. They started with a 25% mix of E85 and petrol and worked their way up to 100% E85. The only downside is fuel consumption rises by up to 30% but that isn't so much of a problem as it is so much cheaper. In the French Autoroute services (which are a lot more expensive than driving a mile or so off the Autoroute and finding a supermarket filling station), but they are the ones that show their prices petrol is around €1.65, LPG is €0.99 (but only €0.75-0.80 in the supermarkets) while E85 is €0.85. So considerably cheaper than petrol, and only marginally more expensive than running on LPG when you take into account that you will use a bit more of it.

Those two articles you linked to are interesting Dave but the first just confirms what has been found, similar performance but less mpg, while the second one is just a scare story to encourage you to buy the lubricants they sell. Any change seems to upset the classic car community but you haven't been able to buy rubber, I mean real rubber, fuel hose for years now, fuel injectors and their O rings aren't rubber and the P38 fuel system is sealed so although the fuel is Hygroscopic, it needs to be in contact with moist air to absorb the moisture and that shouldn't happen.

I've been meaning to start a thread on Nigel's car after working on it for a couple of days recently. I don't think it ever had combustion gases getting into the cooling system at all, I've got my own theory on the sequence of events but I'll save that, and some rather interesting photographs, when I get time to write it up.....

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Ah... I see some 'editing' occurred ! Small point but again "officially" E10 is only 'compatible' for LR from '96 not '94

The whole E5/E10 debate has raged for several years now of course, this comprehensive Govt. 'impact assessment' covers most of it for those unfamiliar but interested:
https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/870089/impact-assessment-measures-for-introduction-of-e10-fuel-stream.pdf

And/or similarly:
https://www.iea-amf.org/content/fuel_information/ethanol/e10/e10_compatibility
(Not sure if the US 'initiative' was based mainly on surplus corn crops though !)

E85 generally remains an 'unknown' though, numerous papers around but generally inconclusive: Overall CO2 reductions are made (compared to petrol) of course but other emissions change too, eg. HCs are up slightly and other carcinogens etc are produced too. No doubt manufacturers know but are just not revealing their detailed findings (?). What is out there differs from manufacturer to manufacturer too. So still only recommended for FFVs (Fuel-Flexible Vehicles) presently ?

https://www.liquisearch.com/e85

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My view is that E5, E10, E85 and neat Ethanol is a flammable liquid so could be used in an internal combustion engine. No different to people running a diesel on cooking oil or recycled chip fat or a petrol engine on LPG or CNG, it isn't what the engine was originally designed to run on but it works. Top fuel dragsters and some of the American race car series run on Ethanol so why not? While trying to get an old engine with a carb to run properly on Ethanol would take quite a bit of alteration to fuelling and ignition, the closed loop control on a relatively modern ECU equipped engine should take care of a lot of the required alterations. Our current ECUs only allow for the ignition timing to be retarded if run on low grade petrol, they don't allow it to be advanced if you run on higher octane fuel for instance but the flex fuel vehicles have an ECU with wider adjustments to fuelling and ignition timing to make optimum use of the different properties. As of 2017 the French Government have allowed the fitting of flex fuel ECUs (previously it was an unapproved modification so the car automatically failed the Controle Technique) to cars that originally couldn't use it although many have found their car will run on it quite adequately without any alteration.

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As you know Richard the main answer to your question "Why Not ?" is UK Legislation. Plus back 15+ years - when E85 was first mooted here - a quote from a Land Rover Service Bulletin stated "...there are no Land Rover vehicles capable of tuning as "flexible fuel" vehicles on E85 nor any fuel system components tailored to high ethanol concentration use."

Similarly I note that there are no LR E85-compatible cars listed .... at least not yet**, unless you want to buy a new one !?
Don't really want to spend ~£700 to have an additional/suitable E85 ECU fitted either.

As previously indicated (but it was 'removed') the whole Diesel/NOx fiasco was enough for me: E85 is cheaper at the moment.

As per the UK Govt. document above I might be interested if a list was provided that did not preclude its use on my (unmodified) vehicles: In the meantime the 600K vehicles incompatible with E10 are more than enough for me too !

Naturally I will be watching yours and Nigel's bio-experiments with some interest....

EDIT ('Translated')** (C/O Richard): "For land rovers, what does this change? Until now, only the Land Rover Freelander 1 V6 and 1.8i, marketed until 2006, could legally benefit from E85 cases. With these new rules, a whole range of used models with a petrol engine becomes eligible for Bioethanol. Thus the latest Range Rover P38A V8 (4.0 l and 4.6 l) marketed, as well as the Discovery Series II equipped with the same block, both considered Euro3 from 2002, become eligible for the approved E85 cases. It is also worth mentioning the Freelander 2 i6 (6 cylinders petrol of 3.2 l and 232 hp) and their 15 fiscal horses, marketed from 2007, which will also be able to drive for much cheaper as soon as homologated housings are available."

Not sure what "homologated housings" means there - but I will be watching all that with some interest too !

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Most people's concerns about ethanol are about fuel system components compatibility.

Then there's the well known differences with calorific value and octane rating and the lesser well known different stochiometric ratio.

On some vehicles with compatible fuel system components the IAV may need to open to a different extent and fuel trims may see limp mode triggered.

A lot of E85 compatible modern vehicles have an 'ethanol content' stream in OBD live data, the detected value of this shifts between fuelling, ignition timing and IAV default position maps.

Nothing wrong with experimentation, I'd probably want to try it myself if I wasn't converted to LPG and E85 was available.