The battle continues over E15

AAA prides itself on its rapid response time for stranded motorists, but when it comes to taking a position on the brewing ethanol-gasoline blend issue, the group continues to say "wait a minute." In this case, AAA is accusing the American Petroleum Institute (API) of misstating AAA's position on allowing for higher ethanol blends, saying that a new ad campaign positions AAA "anti-ethanol," Domestic Fuel says. Of course, the ads are being run in South Dakota, which is among a group of Midwestern states with big corn-farming numbers, so anything anti-ethanol equals bad local politics.

Mind you, AAA was also saying "hold your horses" last December when it came to sales of a 15-percent ethanol blend (better known as E15), saying at the time that sales of E15 should be postponed until there was more research done on the fuel and its potential effects on engines. AAA also said at the time that about 5 percent of US light-duty vehicles were approved for E15 and that many drivers could void their warranties by using the fuel.

The AFI campaign is just the latest salvo involving E15. Last month, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) went after the API, accusing it of misstating some research figures related to E15 use.