AMAG and Empa test synthetic fuels on classic cars


Cham ZG/Dübendorf ZH – Experts from AMAG Classic and the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research (Empa) are currently testing whether artificially produced fuels are compatible with the technology of historic vehicles. Initial measurements are encouraging.

AMAG Classic, based in Schinznach-Bad AG, is currently testing synthetic fuels in selected classic cars in real-world operation as part of a joint project with Empa. These so-called synfuels are made from green hydrogen and carbon dioxide and should theoretically be compatible with the technology of historic vehicles.

Now, various test series are to prove whether this is actually the case and whether the owners’ hopes of being able to drive their classic car with low CO2 emissions in the future will be fulfilled. Material and compatibility tests of relevant vehicle components between the tank and injection or carburetors have already taken place between fall 2022 and April 2023. According to a media release from Cham-based AMAG, these had not shown any abnormalities.

“In theory, there is nothing to prevent older cars from running on the new fuel in the long term,” Christian Bach, head of Empa’s Vehicle Propulsion Systems department, is quoted as saying. “The initial results support this hypothesis.” AMAG CEO Helmut Ruhl also believes that synthetic fuel is the solution for “continuing to move the cultural asset that is classic cars with a clear conscience in the future”. This is why the AMAG Group has acquired a stake in Synhelion. The spin-off from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich aims to produce solar fuel in industrial quantities from 2025. ce/mm