It's a common message these days: going green doesn't mean you can't have any fun. Evidence of this fact can once again be seen as the performance and tuning community continues to look at ethanol for increased performance for a relatively low outlay of cash.

Ethanol, which is an alcohol fuel commonly distilled from corn here in the United States, becomes E85 when mixed with 15 percent gasoline. This fuel then carries an octane rating of about 105, compared to the low 90s for the best commonly available pump gas. This fact means that engines, when tuned properly, can make more horsepower on E85 than pump gas – and sometimes nearly as much as pure race gasoline.

Cobb Tuning claims to be the first company to outfit a Nissan GT-R for use with E85 fuel and is displaying a dyno graph that indicates very high levels of performance are available when Godzilla is tuned properly for ethanol fuels. How much power? Currently, with Cobb's catless midpipe, prototype cat-back exhaust, stock intake, twin Walbro 255 fuel pumps and 800cc Deatschwerks fuel injectors, the GT-R is putting down 574 ponies and 585 pound-feet of torque. After some fiddling, Cobb expects to see 600 horsepower at the wheels.

Sounds great, right? Well, hold on to those horses for a minute. Ethanol, especially when derived from corn, isn't necessarily the pinnacle of green motoring, and modifications (including high-flow fuel injectors in the case of the GT-R) are required to run an engine with high concentrations of alcohol fuel. Still, something tells us that the promise of cheap and easy horsepower will keep ethanol in the greenlight limelight for the foreseeable future.

[Source: Cobb Tuning]

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