Super-unleaded is better for all, says federation

SUPER-UNLEADED should be the only petrol available at the pumps, say the Jersey Motor Trades Federation.

Peter Tabb, spokesman for the Jersey Motor Trades Federation
Peter Tabb, spokesman for the Jersey Motor Trades Federation

SUPER-UNLEADED should be the only petrol available at the pumps, say the Jersey Motor Trades Federation.

The group want only high-grade petrol imported to the Island and say that the price would soon come down once everyone had made the switch.

Their suggestion comes as a possible solution to the announcement that Jersey’s stores of super-unleaded are to be run down at the end of this month.

Last week, it was announced that high-grade fuel was to be phased out, prompting strong protests from motor sports enthusiasts.

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Comments for: "Super-unleaded is better for all, says federation"


It's too expensive, not just Super unleaded but petrol in Jersey in general!


It's all about the Tax Duty put on fuel,and it varies from country to country for those that import their fuel. Dont forget Jersey did away with the old road tax system and opted for a duty to be put onto the fuel at the pump, so the more times you were on the road the more you paid in road tax - maybe the best move the States made in years ! Tax/Duty on fuel has always been seen as a steath tax ! I wonder how much cost of a ltr of petrol goes into the pockets of the states, and i bet that this is more than the owner of the fuel pump makes !

BP explanation and VIDEO

clear explanation--


Propangada and weak-willed viewers springs rapidly to mind.......

Pip Clement

Would the JMTF make a useful extra penny a litre or so on universal super unleaded to add to their already bloated bank balances?


it is outrageous that after 1st march no more super unleaded will be brought into jersey. If you think it's only Rubis that's not so. Your BP Ultimate 97 comes from the same silos at La Collette.-- We had more warning of the German Occupation in WW2

AMISH BUGGY or BORAT renault 12 pulled by mule

any day now....we'll all be AMISH (actually nice way to live-if you are able to remove the religious element)


Don,t really know a lot about this on a technical basis but, if people with vested interests make statements like this it will probably be for their own financial gain. Sounds like they don,t want to offer a choice, just to offer a premium a premium price no doubt. Profit enhancement is the name of the game! By the way, they don,t have anything to do with the breweries do they?


Erm, could be wrong buts isnt the supplier saying they are doing away with super unleaded (more expensive) and keeping the normal stuff?


Don,t think it does sensible though I could be wrong. reading between the lines and the use of "super" implies to me that it,s a premium gas. Read again and see what you think.

Judge Jeffries

Perhaps our ever burgeoning government would like to volunteer a reduction in the duty on super unleaded in order to facilitate this cogent suggestion ? Getting rid of GST on fuel would also suffice- after all it is a tax on top of a tax i.e. self perpetuating.


Not what the fella at the garage told me. He said super unleaded rots the rubber fuel pipes and not to use it in my car. Anyone else heard about this problem ?

Judge Jeffries

Do you mean rubber 'ose or letter 'ose ?

the thin wallet

no i have not.

most owners of old aircooled volkswagon vans , know about rotting fuel pipes which was more of maintanance thing , to save them from catching fire .

dont know how old your car is, but i will go with the makers using a lower grade fuel pipe .

as opposed to what was used before .

many things these days have being made with the bare minimum of material , almost down to the item not functioning .

paints , metals , plastics , ect .

C Le Verdic

Even wallets are so thin nowadays that they fall to bits after very little use!

the thin wallet

your not kidding, c le v .

nice soft leather , but only lasting a couple of years .

mind you it was a cheap one . less than a pound a year .


only the chemicals- TOLUENE etc would dissolve rubber if PLACED DIRECTLY ONTO DRY RUBBER TUBING. when mixed in with petrol THERE IS NO PROBLEM. most modern fuel lines have no rubber and tubing and seals are mostly silicone/plastic.


errr.....What about older cars....?

428 CJ

If I may allay your fears. Super unleaded as it stands at the moment contains no ethanol mix. European fuel regulations are bringing in two new types of petrol - E5 and E10. These have 5 and 10% ethanol content which is derived from plants - i.e a biofuel. Unfortunately ethanol is highly corrosive and many materials (not just rubber) will have problems when it comes into contact. E5 is generally seen as ok for modern vehicles manufactured from around 2007, but older vehicles with carbuettors for example will have problems. Ethanol also is electrically charged which encourages diffent metals (in the carb for example) to react with each other. E10 is a different matter altogether, cars have to be modified specifically to run on the E10 mix. So your man was kind of right, but it's not super which does this. That's one of the reasons many want things to stay as they are and I guess JMTF would have considered this as part of their decision ? Note also storage tanks and pipes both at the fuel farm and at petrol forecourts will have to be converted to cope with ethanol in the future so if premiumn unleaded goes the same way and is replaced or superceded by E5 then E10 then who will pay the costs of conversion ?


Having read the recent report into fuel usage, pricing, competition etc:

...I am wondering WHY all of the comparisons etc. are done with European countries. We arent in the EU.

Prices in the US are $4 a gallon, and in the middle east PENCE per litre - WHY arent we / the Distributors buying fuel from there instead of the expensive stuff from Rotterdam etc?


Dude, take a step back, think about what you have posted and then maybe wonder if you've missed something...


Are you sure you haven't? Bob's post made perfect sense to us.


"the price would soon come down once everyone had made the switch"

And here I was going to put on a comedy to cheer up a dreary day. :-D

The Thinker

Yes, I'm suspicious as to the real reason why this 'solution' is being put forward.

Super makes sense

Perhaps because his members want to not only be able to contine to sell cars in the Island over the coming years as most mainstream manufacturers switch to the more efficient smaller turbo engines but also so that their existing customers who own cars that require Super can continue to use them at all ! I dont smell the rat you seem to be looking for


Not correct. The move now is away from turbos and more towards effient multi-valve techoology

Super makes sense

Sorry but you would have been correct a decade ago but manufacturers ARE moving to small capacity turbo engines if you care to do some research (clues are in my first post) else you just need to read Fridays JEP to see a perfect example, the new Renault Clio with a 900cc turbo engine pushing 89 bhp. As another example Honda are dropping the 2 litre Vtec K20 engine for the Civic in favour of a 1.6 turbo. If Honda, the innovators of variable valve timing, are ditching it you know its not out of choice.


Wow, amazing. A Renault Clio with 89 bhp. Now that must be something to behold. And a Honda Civic 1.6. What will these clever industrialists think of next- a square steering wheel? (sorry, British Leyland has already been there).


Turbos are neither more efficient than non-turbo nor are they what manufacturers are switching to. Even they were, it would be cheapness of manufacture rather than engineering principle which would prompt such a move.

Super makes sense

So you are saying building an engine then building all the paraphernalia that is needed to go with a turbo is cheaper than just building the engine ? A little bit of research will show you your not correct with those statements


Quite so. Ford is starting to remanufacture the 1172cc, long stroke, sidevalve engine which last appeared in the 100e Popular in 1962. An updated version, putting out 41 bhp through a shorrock supercharger, will be fitted to the incoming top of the range Focus models.

It will need premium grade, otherwise the white metal main bearings will begin to disintregate.

Of course, scale of production will make it cheaper to fit turbos, for those of us who are silly enough to believe that aything other than manufacturing considerations should dictate such a thing. What a car salesman's dream!


Ken, no point in trying to preach to the converted, Super makes Sense quite clearly knows best !


He is correct. All vehicles will run better on super, smoother engine, cleaner burn and improved mpg. A large number of vehicles can not run on normal unleaded without terminal engine damage.

@jerseybean - SUL itself will not damage any component. It's the ethanol added to normal unleaded that can damage components in older (pre 2007ish). Ethanol has to be added now under EU regulation so modern cars are built to cope. The SUL currently being imported has zero ethanol


Why is everybody so suspicious...?

Higher-octane fuels are more resistant to a phenomenon known as ‘engine knock’ – a process by which unburned fuel pre-ignites in a vehicle’s engine, causing potential damage to interior components. The higher the RON of a fuel, the more likely it will be to burn in a controlled manner in the engine, and so the lower the chance of knocking. Therefore reducing the likelihood of engine damage.

Its not just about profiteering.


Super unleaded is far too expensive for the working man / woman.

Super makes sense

a) Its about the same as Diesel which people seem to be able to afford and b) it returns better mpg so you get more miles to the tank, offsetting its higher initial price, and on some cars prevents expensive engine damage so when viewed in the whole Super actually is by far the cheaper option to regular. This is what Peter Tabb is trying to say, its a shame most people are not open minded enough to listen to sound advise from someone in the know. Having only Super in Jersey would allow all cars, bikes, generators, lawn mowers etc to still be used whilst everyone benefits from a better deal and cleaner emissions - everyone wins


I wasn't aware that Mr Tabb is a qualified motor engineer, nor was I aware that he holds a degree in industrial chemistry.

What I do know is that this all looks very suspicious and I agree with the snetiment that super unleaded is too expensive for the ordinary motorist, irrespective of the convoluted arguments that the "man in the pub" amateur mechanics are peddling here.


Ken, your not listening!!!

1. Super gives better MPG

2. Is better for the environment

3. is better for the engine

It's in the word "better"


No it doesn't.

Super makes sense

Ah Ken something you are correct in. Mr Tabb is not any of those things. Mr Tabb is in fact the Spokesperson for the JMTF, ie he is just the mouth of the organisation, he therefore does not need qualifications as he is speeaking for those that do.

Mark, no point in trying to preach to the converted, Ken quite clearly knows best !


I wouldn't say that I know best, I can just recognise a "dodgy" argument :)

You are quite right about the ubiquitous Mr Tabb. Surely the fact that he is a paid mouthpiece of the retailers (none of which will be qualified in petro-chemistry I would bet) shows that we need to treat the issued statements with caution, or perhaps, as seems to be the case, you are one of those people who believes everything that they are told...?


Yes, he is a spokesman for the retailers- hardly independent.

Pinking pre-ignition

Do you know what the saying "preaching to the converted" means, Super? It would seem not.


All cars can run on Super but opposite not true leaving many cars likely damaged or without warranty.

Super is also generally more efficient so while a few pence more per litre the miles per pound is better.

Think Fairy washing up liquid versus cheap washing up liquid


1 - 8 have the wrong end of the stick. He's just saying that it would be better to drop the low grade product rather than the high one.

The economy of scale would mean that the high grade product should cost less than it does now.

The question is which product would we prefer to have if we could only choose one.

There's some sense in what he's saying but the true effect on prices would be uncertain.

Wheel out the walrus!

Ultra high octane space fuel would provide the best return.

Its somewhat higher rated qualities would maintain the combustion chambers in a deposit-free condition and would ensure peak performance and little emission.

At around £200 per gallon, the price would be well worth it in real terms.

Of course, as with the premium grade unleaded, there would be an unexpected and not unwelcome cash windfall for the retailers.

Naturally, they have not immediately thought of such a less than savoury trifle- Mr Tabb's statement is issued with our welfare in mind and he looks benevolently upon us and the health of our cars.

Any notion of additional profit is purely incidental and never even entered the retailers' collective mind.


There's no hidden motive behind it. Rubis are going to stop importing SUL. Thousands of cars and bikes in Jersey require SUL to run safely and efficiently. Importing just SUL would mean everyone would get the grade of fuel they need and the economy of scale would bring the price down. Petrol is more expensive here than is US or Arab states because:

1. We dont make it here, it has to be transported around the world

2. we pay tax and fuel duty on it instead of pay an annual road fee

3. Rubis can only buy and store a relatively small amount each time so they cant easily negotiate a low price

4. The cost of running a petrol station in Jersey is higher than UK, higher rent, higher wages, higher rates etc

Super makes sense

Peter Tabb is actually correct.

Super Unleaded burns at a higher temperature and thus gives a cleaner and more efficient burn making it more environmentally friendlier than regular unleaded and it also improves the mgp

This test, reported not by some Fast Lad Custom Car magazine but a world renouned Motoring publication, shows that whilst a little more expensive to buy Super is actually cheaper to use than filling up with the cheaper per unit Regular unleaded which is less efficient.

Also with tightening EU regulations car manufacturers are turning away from the traditional normally aspirated engines in favour of small capacity turbo engines as they can produce similar power to them but much more efficiently and quieter. Turbos are not, contrary to popular belief, some kind of item purely for making fast cars faster, they are actually a much more efficient way of filling an engine with air rather than letting the engine try and suck the air in itself hence why they are becoming widely used in your normal everyday car. For example cars from the VW group now run 1.4 turbo engines in place of their 1.6, 1.8 and 2 litre engines, Ford are getting rid of their larger engines for 1.0 litre turbo engines and so are Honda and many other manufactures so in the not so distant future most new "normal" cars will be running small turbo engines and will need Super Unleaded to be able to work efficiently.

Already some cars demand the use of Super and by using regular unleaded in these will void warranties when engines are damaged the manufactureres will walk away. I do not see Rubis stepping in to replace them at their cost. This situation looks set to worsen as the use of turbo engines becomes more wide spead (thank the EU for that).

Also as well as the emissions issue cars are getting larger and heavier and they need more powerful engines to be able to pull them around but still be efficient. Again step up the Turbo. This is another reason why more engines are now being built with turbos with even more are on the way. Turbos need higher octane petrol as they force air and fuel into the engine which makes teh mix more unstable and likely to ignite from the hot conditions in the engine before the spark plug can do it. This is called pre-ignition or pinking and can seriously damage engines. The qualities of higher octane fuel suppress that and is the reason why Super is needed to make them work efficiently.

People will argue that modern engines retard the ignition to prevent damage but ask yourself why they do this. It is not something to give the car owner choice, it is a safety system built in to try and prevent damage from having the wrong fuel put in, it is not there to be used as a one-or-the-other option.

Sadly the general perception over this issue is that Super is some kind of drug for power crazy boy racers so its abolition is something to be welcomed in some misguided belief that it will at a stroke stop speeding and accidents but this is so far from the truth. This is not about making cars faster it is about making them more efficient and reliable. This is predominantly why this affects motorsport. These engines are built to be as efficient as possible with the fuels available, by removing Super it is like asking Usain Bolt to run with a stone in his shoe, he wont be able to do so as well and risks injury.

It is also about choice. Some people are happy to fill up with the cheap stuff as its less they spend in one go but there are others who can see the larger picture and realise that Super is the more superior fuel in all avenues (even cost when mpg is factored in as the car will go further on a tank) and quite rightly want to fight to keep it on sale here.

It is funny to see several names of people on here who are regular posters who are usually outraged by the lack of choice, consumer freedom and having things forced upon them by faceless corporations or government yet are belittling the attempts by a lobby group to fight this enforced reduction in consumer choice .... frankly it beggars belief !! Why let the truth get in the way of a good conspiracy theory eh ??

I am the Walrus

No. There is a move away from turbochargers on all except for some diesel vehicles.

The petrol engines that we are considering here are now gravitating towards multi-valve technology and variable valve timing.

I can't see the athmatic one litre Ford Focus catching on, turbo or no turbo. There is no substitute for a reasnable engine capacity and advanced, normally aspirated head technology.

save super.

This sums it up perfectly,i don't need to put my point across after reading it.

Thanks for taking the time.

Larry Lambda

As a "world renowned motoring publication", it will have its own invisible affiliations.

Those who believe every word are perhaps the more easily led members of its readership.

As a the closing words of your post so aptly state, "why let the truth get in the way..."? Why indeed?!

Super makes sense

My truth is based on research, fact and reasoning, whats yours based on ? The truth is out there for people to find if they want to, how much research did you do before posting you comment ?

Larry Lambda

If your source of research relies, as we see, upon a single magazine with hidden affiliations, then one would venture to suggest that it is not a very meaningful research.


His research may only be limited to one publication, but mine isn't and I can assure you that this opinion has been verified by many independent sources the world over.

I would also point out that two posts stating 'I think your're wrong', with no reasoning or research whatsoever is far less meaningful.

Larry Lambda

If your research is so good, CC, perhaps you would care to provide some reference to it and to certify that it is independent of any influence from the oil industry.

I won't hold my breath.

Super makes sense

Larry, I may have posted one publication (so as to not clog up the thread) but there are plenty more out there if you could be bothered to do the research for yourself.

Is The Independant any more neutral for you ?

I am the Warlus, as I've said in a post above this was correct a decade ago but not now. Larger capacity engines are giving way to smaller turbo units. The last article I read suggested that 1.0 Ford engine is being developed to produce up to 170bhp - the same output as the first-gen Focus ST, hardly asthmatic !

Did you read Fridays JEP, the new Clio with the 900cc turbo engine ? You are looking at the shape of things to come. When Honda are ditching their flagship K20 Vtec engine for a 1.6 turbo unit you know the writings on the wall.

Larry Lambda

Well, the independant (sic) calles itself "the Independent" because it wants to appear, ahem, independent.

The Guardian likes to regard itself as a guardian of social justice.

The editor of the "Independant" must have a chuckle at the gullibility of some when he hears- "I read it in the Independant, gov'nor, so it must be true" !

Read the road test reports (perhaps in the Independant) of the (so-called) 170 bhp one-litre Ford Focus- it probably has no usuable torque and produces any power at 15,000 rpm!


No, Super. The wheezy Focus engine is available in two power outputs; 98bhp with a five-speed gearbox, or 123bhp and a six-speed gearbox.

It may well be that it can be chipped to produce what you say, but how long would it last, though and how inefficient would it be? It would probably be dreadful to drive as well.

Stuart Turner and Daniel Richmond were extracting this kind of power from the A series engine in the 1960s, so it is not exactly cutting edge, particularly when one considers that the A series first appeared in 1950 and was a pushrod engine of entirely conventional design.

What is interesting is the fact that the turbocharger on the overburdened Focus engine is a tiny one. Where does most of the power come from? Yes, you've guessed it, good old fashioned four valve per cylinder technology.

Manufacturers will standardise turbochargers as a cheap route to extra power. It will end up being cheaper to build with them than without, given modern mass production techniques.

You only have to look at some expensive items like automatic transmissions- on a lot of cars this was and reamins a "delete option" and the manual 'box costs the same. The reason for this is that the cheaper manual transmission model ends up being more expensive to build where, on a Jaguar for instance, the production line was set up to make a predominently automatic model. The same principle applies to turbochargers and all of the other things that manufacturers like to tell us that we need.

Super is pointless in ordinary cars

Super makes Sense- the situation surely is that the person who makes the argument must provide the research if he wishes to be taken seriously.

The following points arise:

1. It is not for others to do the research where the person who makes the argument cannot be bothered to do so. More to the point,m if the person who makes the argument cannot, as we see, find any research to support his argument, then it would be more mature for him or her to concede the point and to admit the opinions of others.

2. The person makng the argument needs to provide proper research. A newspaper report, which is a seoncodary source, will not do. One of the commentators suggested that you provide a lnk to proper, independent, research. This you have, thus far, failed to do.

3. "Independent research" means research produced by an entity which has been certified as independent and unbiased. That would, almost by definition, rule out newspapers. It would certainly rule out any retailers' pressure group or any spokesperson for the same.

Pip Clement

As it says in the the article;

However, high-octane unleaded is known to have a greater effect on heavily tuned and turbocharged cars like the VXR than it does on lower-spec, naturally aspirated models.

Most drivers, particularly in Jersey with it's low speed, urban driving, will find little or no difference in mpg, what they will find is that they will still be paying a few pence more per litre.

I can get about 240 miles on a tank full in Jersey, on a French motorway I can get around 300 with the same stuff, now that is a difference.

Super makes sense

Pip, whilst I acknowledge that the VXR is a performance model, the reason I consider this article relevant is because it is a turbo engine and as I have said now in many posts, the small turbo engine is being looked at by many manufacturers as the future this makes this research relevant to turbo fed engines large and small.


The small turbo engine might be being "looked at", but it remains highly questionable whether it is the way forward- I would doubt it.


Excellent post. I hope people read it and take it in.

Larry Lambda

It sounds like they already have been taking it in if some of these vociferous posts are anything to go by.


I have read some of the comments with interest because my day job, Fuel Savings for UK based Commercial Vehicle Fleets, brings me into contact with people who are very knowledgeable on the subject of Fuels.

I can tell you that Fuels is a very specialist subject and there are few people that seem to know what they are talking about. I do not pretend to be an expert and my company has access to a fuels consultant.

I also do ECU Remapping and DPF Resets locally, privately and through local garages. I have met many people involved in the Jersey Rally and other Motor Sports and their is a genuine concern over the withdrawal of SUL.

My view on this matter is that there should now be a stay on the withdrawal of SUL and a consultation process with input from “experts” outside of Jersey on the economic, environmental and financial effects of withdrawing SUL VERSUS the effects of having SUL (which is only 97 Octane vs Tesco Momentum at 99 Octane) as the only petrol available.

Pip Clement

97 RON is around 8% more expensive than 95% but it is only 2% better in terms of RON.

You would have to do well in the mpg stakes to offset the higher cost.

I guess most people would not see such a gain so another squeeze to the pocket of the average Jersey person and a bit more inflation in to the system.

Pip Clement

It is looking like petrol is going up again by Easter.

B my reckoning from predicted UK prices we will face vanilla 95 RON at £1.20 a litre with 97 RON at £1.29.

If you have to commute then a small, economical car is the way to go if you are lucky enough to have a job.


This was mentioned on the news the other day, the rise in the price of petrol is linked to the fall in the value of the UK£.

Because oil is priced in US$ and the exchange rate is pushing up the price.

The UK£ may fall further as they have just lost their AAA credit rating

Economical car is the way to go!


The cost difference between premium and super does not go to the local retailer.

The margin on a litre varies per outlet/forecourt but generally is around the 12p a litre mark, irrespective of fuel type.

So, by keeping the "more expensive" fuel, the supplier is not actually making any more money.

Once the wholesale quantity order increases, then the overall price, before margins, will reduce.

That means the overall price will come down.

Simple economies of scale really.

Still, as is the norm in Jersey, people will blindly accept the "truth" from the people I charge as they know best.

It starts with petrol being reduced in choice, but where will it end?

ricky pryor

yeah i was the guy at the garage who mentioned the rubber pies story. sorry mate i lied.

matt rawlings

ive been on this island all my life and ive never heard poppycock in all me life lets take to the streets , royal square for starters!

will herdman

bring back syvret!!


ricky pryor, matt rawlings and will herdman, next time can I suggest you reboot your router so people cannot tell you are pretending to be three people.

It's all in the avitar my friend(s) ha ha

the jersey general

get a life propaganda. u should get behind the boys and take to the streets! syvret for lieutenant!!


Just been reading about fuel prices in Scotland, highest price for petrol is in Newbridge, Edinburgh @ £1.40.9 and for diesel at South Queensferry @ £1.47.9.

Flat Cap (no indicators)

Will my Honda Jazz still go on the old-fashioned petrol?


The wealthy want this petrol to run their expensive vehicle. So the fact it may destroy common vehicles is of no relevance.


The different in cost between 95 and 97 should be minimal. The extra mpg gained from 97 should more than wipe out the difference in cost. Do Rubis want you to get more miles for your money?

Yet again - choices are taken away from us in the name of profit.


Almost all modern cars will run fine on normal 95 ron unleaded. They may be a little less efficient but only by a couple of % and doubtful you would feel it.

High performance cars will also run ok - see above but maybe a few more % if they run high compression. Turbo cars run lower compression and should also be fine. However if I had a high performance car which I had spent tens of thousands on I would want it to run 100% so I can understand why there is a but of a fuss.

No modern car is going to react significantly differently or conk out or rot fuel pipes because of normal 95 ron unleaded.

The debate about turbo's is old news. The motor industry is going down the turbo road BIG time due to modern electronics allowing for small capacity turbo charged engines to be significantly cleaner with much lower CO2 (which inturn impacts TAX in many places) and more efficient - MPG then anything other than highly developed (read expensive) normally aspirated engines. On mass produced cars it is nothing to do with overall power but a move towards efficiency, power density and environmental and industry pressures. Either all major manufacturers have introduced low capacity turbo engines - Ford, Renault, Nissan, Honda (the largest manufacturer of petrol engines btw) to replace larger normally aspirated engines or are about to do so such as the N/A 4 cylinder 1.6 in Mini's being replaced with a 3 cylinder 1.5 Turbo next year. If in doubt look to motorsport where manufacturers win on Sunday, sell on Monday (albeit looking slightly out of date in these greener times) for industry trends. Formula Ford, the first step on the single seater path for many world champions has recently changed to the EcoBoost 1.0 Turbo, all the way up to F1 which goes 1.6 V6 turbo in 2014. Even British Touring Cars where the cars look a little like what you can buy are 4 cylinder 1.6 Turbo's. Anybody who says otherwise are out of touch with the motoring industry.


Going to look into switching my home oil from rubis to another supplier if we lose super unleaded. Take away my business when they can't supply fuel readiily available in other so called poor countries.