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3.3 Producer gas vehicles recently operated in other countries

Recent operating experience from conversion and operation of vehicles on producer gas is not restricted to Sweden. The format of this chapter does not allow a review and evaluation of the experiences of other countries, but it is of interest at least to identify possible additional sources of information regarding this application of gasifiers.

In the countries listed below, producer gas vehicles are known to have been operated in the last decade. The list-is not claimed to be complete, but it still shows that there is a certain interest in producer gas vehicles outside Sweden, even though only two countries, the Philippines and Brazil, appear to have more than a few prototype units in operation.

In (30) brief reports on producer gas vehicles in the following countries are given.


A small pick-up truck using wood chips as fuel.


Two trucks, one using charcoal, the other wood or biomass residues as fuel.


A logging tractor using wood as fuel.


A farm tractor using wood as fuel.


Six large trucks using wood as fuel, see also (45).


At least two farm tractors have been converted to wood gas by two different manufacturers of gasifiers.


A jeep using a charcoal gasifier has been operated since 1981.

South Africa

The government is reported to be making a major drive for use of wood fuelled gasifiers for small engines. There have been at least two operating vehicles, probably using charcoal as fuel, see Gore (15).


A least three wood powered cars have been driven across the country. There is also a wood powered motorcycle and a wood powered farm tractor.

Reports on operation of single vehicles have also been received from Kenya, Sri Lanka (see 24), the Seychelles and Tanzania. These vehicles, except the one in the Seychelles, use charcoal as fuel. The tests reported by Kulasinghe (24) are particularly interesting, since the equipment was designed and manufactured locally.

In Brazil and the Philippines finally, commercial production of gasifier systems for vehicles has started. Charcoal is the main fuel used. The number of vehicles in operation is reported in (12) to be about 300 in Brazil and 200 in the Philippines. More details of the programme in Brazil have been reported by Brandini (8).

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