PETRONAS: RACING TO IMPROVE THE BREED
PETRONAS is growing its Australian market share by offering world-class products that have successfully powered world champions, the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team
PETRONAS Lubricants has been gradually expanding its network of distributors in Australia over the past few years.
In 2008, PETRONAS acquired the Italian fluids and lubricants company Selenia, which was established in 1910 as part of FIAT’s lubricant division with the aim of manufacturing “first fill” lubricants for all FIAT vehicles.
Currently ranked among the top 10 leading global lubricants companies, PETRONAS Lubricants International offers different ranges of lubricants for passenger cars, commercial and heavy vehicles, transmission and hydraulic systems, agriculture and earthmoving machinery, motor bikes and industrial and manufacturing equipment under different brands such as Syntium, Urania, Tutela, Ambra, Akcela, and Sprinta.
The PETRONAS brand is synonymous with Mercedes-AMG in F1. Together, they have dominated the modern Formula One era by winning a historic seventh consecutive World Constructors’ Championship at the end of the 2020 season.
The successes achieved over the years underscore the dynamic collaboration between PETRONAS and The Silver Arrows and demonstrates the relentless determination and talent of its workforce while giving testimony to the prowess of the company’s fluid technology solutions.
“PETRONAS is like the best partner you could ask for. We have been together 10 years and it is so much more than all the other marketing partnerships that you see with the other teams because it is a true collaboration,” Toto Wolff, the Team Principal and Chief Executive Officer of the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team, said.
“PETRONAS has been a fantastic contributor of our success; we feel that we are the PETRONAS team.
“The contribution is absolutely visible in our performances. PETRONAS oils and lubricants has helped to propel us to the front of the grid, and we cannot say thank you enough.”
Toto believes that working closely to improve both the team’s performances and the PETRONAS products is the key to the success of the partnership.
“We work very closely with them because in this age the performance gains need to go in both directions.
“We are looking for performance gains in our race cars and in our road cars. PETRONAS fuels our top of the range AMG cars and we are always learning from the feedback of what is the fastest laboratory in the world – Formula One.
“We always pass those learnings back to PETRONAS and I believe the steps we have made together have allowed PETRONAS to produce a better product compared to their competitors in the market.
“The learnings and the speed of delivery in Formula One is just above everything…in Formula One you need to bring your A-game and that performance will translate into any other product that PETRONAS supplies to the world market.”
Toto is convinced it is a true ‘win win’ partnership with direct benefits to both parties.
“PETRONAS are experts in motor racing. They have been a part of Formula One for more than 25 years; they have been with Sauber and they have been with BMW and then our partnership began in 2010 and all of the learnings they have had over that time are now a benefit to Mercedes,” he said.
Toto says that PETRONAS’ experience, hard work, dedication and drive to achieve success is a big reason Mercedes has won the past seven world drivers’ and constructors’ championships.
“This is the reason why there are not many teams in any sport that have won consecutive championships,” Toto explains.
“I believe that along with PETRONAS we have broken records with our seven constructors’ championships not only in Formula One but in the wider sports world; we are one of the most successful sports teams in the world in any sport and that can only happen if every partner on this journey contributes their expertise.
“This is where PETRONAS has just been wonderful. Over all of these years, we have always had the support of the senior management. They have stood behind us in good times and bad times.
“We put them on a pedestal because we cannot praise them enough. The lead from the top has flowed down through the organisation on every level.
“We have support and collaboration on all of the performance objectives, on marketing objectives, on brand objectives…it is across all areas that provide both big gains and marginal gains.”
Toto is hopeful that the relationship will continue long into the future with the two brands of Mercedes and PETRONAS becoming synonymous with each other.
“I believe that PETRONAS and Mercedes need to stay in partnership forever…the longer the partnership exists, the more that the partners’ values and brands become overlaid,” he says.
“When the customer looks at PETRONAS, he thinks of Mercedes, and when a Mercedes driver looks at the oil or fuel products that he can buy he will think about the joint success of the two brands.
“We are in a perfect marriage. It is about winning, and it is about setting your expectations. It is about the strength of time. Everything we do we will share with PETRONAS and hopefully build multiple pillars of success together.”
Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team Driver, Valtteri Bottas, finished second in the 2020 Formula One World Championship to teammate Lewis Hamilton and also believes the team’s partnership with PETRONAS is paramount to its success.
“I always think of the fluids in the car that PETRONAS supply as the blood of the heart of the engine of the car,” Valtteri said.
The Finnish driver believes the presence of the PETRONAS personnel at the track is a comforting element that allows him to focus on his job of driving the car.
“The PETRONAS engineers are at every single race and they make sure everything is functioning well; they are always taking samples and detecting any worries with the cars and risks with parts of the cars.
“They are constantly checking to make sure there are no foreign bodies in the fluids and that things are not about to go wrong.
“Seeing them and chatting with them gives me the confidence that everything is under control and that the car will see the chequered flag in the race.”