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compensate for that to enable the lubricant to maintain the required protection.

Efficiency gains can only be fully optimised when the engine hardware works in complete harmony with the approved engine lubricant. Consequently, the engine lubricant can only perform as intended when each of its many and sophisticated components are correctly formulated and subsequently manufactured to the specified component ratios.

Extensive laboratory, engine and field testing undertaken by Lubrizol has demonstrated that even subtle changes to an approved lubricant formulation may have catastrophic implications on the protection and efficiency of the engine during its life, and at the same time can invalidate the formal OEM approval of the finished lubricant.

Approved engine lubricants must meet rigorous OEM performance demands to ensure efficiency improvements are realised and protection is not compromised. Such requirements apply to industry baseline approvals – such as the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the American Petroleum Institute (API) – as well as more stringent OEM factory-fill, genuine oil and service-fill engine lubricant specifications.

It is important to reinforce the difference between a lubricant that has obtained a formal OEM approval, for example, approved to Volkswagen “VW 504.00 / 507.00”, compared to a lubricant that may be marketed as “to VW 504.00 / 507.00 performance” or “suitable for VW 504.00 / 507.00”. Lubricants marketed as “to” or “suitable for” may not have been formally approved by the OEM and may not provide the correct level of performance and protection.

Conversely, lubricant brands that have obtained this OEM approval will, in this instance, have met a wide range of quality and environmental assurance standards demanded by VW, as well as successfully passing an extensive and rigorous lubricant testing regime.

OEM approvals give oil marketers the opportunity to promote technically advanced lubricant solutions to customers, while giving end-users the reassurance the lubricant has been designed to perform efficiently


throughout its lifetime and protect one of the most valuable assets many of us often take for granted.

It is important lubricants conform to an approved specification. Institutions such as Services to Associations and Industry in the Lubricants sector (SAIL) in Europe, which operates on behalf of the Technical Association of the European Lubricants Industry (ATIEL), as well as Petroleum Quality Institute of America (PQIA) in the USA undertake random sampling to ensure they conform to claimed specific technical specifications.

Marketers of lubricants that do not perform to an approved technical specification can quickly lose trust, damage their brand and company reputation, as well as face potential expensive warranty claims from the end-user.

The continuing and sophisticated changes in automotive engines further reinforces the importance of ensuring the engine lubricant is correctly designed and tested to work in harmony with the internal combustion engine, delivering the optimal balance of efficiency and protection. As mentioned previously, it is imperative the engine lubricant is correctly formulated and subsequently manufactured to the specified component ratios, as any changes to either of these can have significant adverse implications on the performance and durability protection of the engine hardware.

For its part, Lubrizol continues to develop state-of- the-art lubricants that meet the needs of the OEM, as well as play a key role in the development of new tests for next generation OEM hardware. A portfolio of proven lubricant solutions enables oil marketers to market differentiated, technically advanced and future-proofed lubricants to its customers.

Higher-performing engine lubricants continue to play a vital role in the ongoing evolution of automotive technology. Working in harmony the additive, performance polymer, pour point depressant and high-quality base oil support engine development and support the drive to a more sustainable, safer and cleaner future.


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