ENGINE OIL EVOLUTION

In 2020 both API and ILSAC are evolving their latest petrol standards

When it comes to modern lubricants, an ongoing challenge confronting market leaders like Castrol is developing and delivering products that can support OEMs in their pursuit of fuel economy gains, without sacrificing engine performance or reliability.
Increasingly demanding emission targets, driven by associated Government legislation, has forced OEMs to adapt their engine technology and operating conditions to comply.
With engine technology evolving rapidly as a result, it is necessary for key industry bodies to keep pace in defining new testing and benchmarks to provide assurance of a lubricant’s performance to motorists, mechanics and manufacturers.

What is changing?
To cater to the new technical demands placed on lubricants, 2020 sees both the API (American Petroleum Institute) and ILSAC (International Lubricants Standardization and Approval Committee) evolving their latest petrol standards with the introduction of two new specifications – API SP and ILSAC GF-6 – each delivering enhanced performance benefits over their predecessors.
One key area that both API SP and ILSAC GF-6 seek to provide assurance around is Low Speed Pre-Ignition (LSPI), which is increasingly a concern in today’s smaller turbocharged petrol direct injection engines.
In the case of ILSAC GF-6, this involved the addition of specific LSPI testing criteria (Ford LSPI test) vs. ILSAC GF-5, with the test differentiating between oils that minimise its occurrence and those that may contribute to it.
Beyond this, more demanding testing and standards apply, focused on wear, sludge, oxidisation and fuel economy, with three new tests and four upgraded tests being added to the criteria for ILSAC GF-6 approval.
Of note with ILSAC GF-6 is that for the first time, the specification will be split into two sub-categories – GF-6A and GF-6B – depending on the oil’s viscosity grade and high temperature high shear (HTHS) viscosity requirements.
ILSAC GF-6A (or more commonly referenced as simply GF-6) will replace the current GF-5 specification in market. Being backwards compatible, it is approved for use where OEMs call for older specs such as ILSAC GF-5 or ILSAC GF-4.
In the case of ILSAC GF-6B, this specification meets all the same performance criteria of GF-6A but has a lower HTHS specification. It is applied to the SAE 0W-16 viscosity grade and will not be backwards compatible to earlier ILSAC specifications due to the change in HTHS specification.
API SP includes all ILSAC requirements, while at the same time providing performance requirements for oils that do not fall under ILSAC-member recommendations. API SP is backward compatible to all prior API petrol standards.

Tomorrow’s products, today
Castrol says it has long been at the forefront of engine oil technology and innovation, and states that commitment remains true today with the introduction of products carrying the latest API and ILSAC specifications.
With multiple Castrol engine oils already available in Australia carrying API SP and ILSAC GF-6 approvals, Castrol says mechanics and drivers alike can ensure they are using products benchmarked against the highest standards.
To meet the demands of today’s most advanced vehicles – including downsized turbo engines prone to damage caused by LSPI – Castrol MAGNATEC Professional DX 5W-30 and Castrol MAGNATEC FUEL SAVER DX 5W-30 products have already been tested and approved to both API SP and ILSAC GF-6 specifications.
Providing coverage all the way from 1L top-up packs through to 205L drums, Castrol says these full synthetic engine oils provide peace of mind for both workshops and drivers with the latest specification and intelligent molecules to provide engines with instant protection from the moment they start.
In addition to these upgrades, Castrol says it will soon be adding a new cutting-edge product – Castrol EDGE 0W-20 C5 – to the range. Carrying API SP and ILSAC GF-6 specifications, this advanced full synthetic product has a broad application across late model vehicles and holds an extensive range of additional Industry and OEM Approvals including: ACEA C5, Chrysler MS 6395, GM dexos1 Gen 2, MB-Approval 229.71, Fiat 9.55535-CR1, Fiat 9.55535-GSX, Ford WSS-M2C947-A and Ford WSS-M2C947-B1.
To learn more about API SP and ILSAC GF-6 contact the Castrol Technical Team on 1300 557 998.

To discover Castrol’s full product range, speak to your local Castrol rep, call Castrol on 1300 554 890, or visit www.castrol.com.au