AAA says most cars don't need premium-grade gasoline

Posted at 5:17 PM, Sep 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-20 17:17:31-04

New research by AAA shows that most cars on the road do not need premium-grade gasoline.

According to AAA, drivers wasted more than $2.1 billion in the last year buying higher grade gas for cars that are designed to run on regular grade gas.

"Most of the vehicles that we drive don't require premium gas but we purchase premium gas almost as a treat for our cars," said Gary Bubar, public affairs specialist with Michigan AAA.

The study shows higher octane does not necessarily mean higher quality.

According to a AAA survey, 70% of the cars on the road require regular unleaded gas, but this past year, 16.5 million of those drivers have paid extra to get premium gas.

"Only higher performance, higher compression engines require premium."

The study also shows American drivers waste more than 2.1 billion dollars a year using premium gas on cars that don't need it.

There was very little difference in performance, little difference in tailpipe emissions and power, all those things didn't matter in most cars," he explained.

With premium gas costing at least 20 cents more a gallon on average, using regular can keep you wallet full.

"That's a pretty good chunk of money over time that you are putting into your car for no apparent reason," Bubar added.