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New VLS case highlights the important distinction between official approvals and other marketing claims


VLS has opened case 168 which concerns automotive lubricant products and claims made against an OEM specification where the products are claiming official approvals. An initial investigation has identified that, as far as VLS can tell, the products involved are not listed on the official approval lists of the major OEM as being officially approved. VLS has therefore requested justification from the product marketer for the ‘official approval’ claims.


As per its Specifications and Marketing Claims guidance, VLS recognises the right of lubricant blenders, manufacturers and marketers to make marketing claims in connection with the description of their products. However, the use of these claims is complex and there is little consistency in how the terms are used and applied to marketing claims.


VLS considers that both ‘approved’ and ‘recommended for use’ are valid claims as long as they are underpinned by relevant technical evidence.


just hope it’s right


Don’t


If a product claims to be ‘approved’ then this will be checked with reference to an approval authority, such as an OEM’s website. If this is not possible the product marketer must provide documentary evidence that a valid and current approval from the OEM exists. This is in contrast to a ‘recommended for use’ or ‘meets the requirements of’ claim, where the Named Party will be asked to provide details of the technical assessment that underpins the marketing claims.


For more details on the guidance visit: www.ukla-vls.org.uk/publications


To view the outcome of the case visit http://ukla-vls. org.uk/case-outcomes/


LINK www.ukla-vls.org.uk


VLS investigates engine oils making misleading claims about their specifications and the standards they meet.


By raising a case with VLS you can prove whether products are genuinely fit for purpose or are making false or misleading claims.


Why risk damage to your customers’ vehicles or your own reputation?


Check with VLS.


Report a case by calling 01442 875922 or emailing admin@ukla-vls.org.uk.


www.ukla-vls.org.uk


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