New Generation Of Motor Oil Mandated For 2011 Cars
[Update: Ooops; I didn’t notice that Sajeev already has a post questioning these oils’ testing regime. In case you missed it, or just want the heads up before you join that discussion, here it is, in the less-controversial version]
Few subjects stir up more controversy than motor oil. Now it’s time for the latest perpetual changing of the current required new oil for new cars. AutoNews reports that GM, Ford and Chrysler are making the switch to a new generation of oils for their 2011 vehicles, known by their grading as GF-5, SN, or in GM’s case, Dexos 1. Be aware: using any oil other than one of these may void the powertrain warranty. (I might have thought GM would have retired the “Dex” moniker).
As usual, the new grade are designed to help engines run more efficiently, protect from wear, handle heat associated with turbocharging, and extend oil change intervals. The difference between GF-5 and Dexos? Testing. GF-5 is an American Petroleum Institute (API) testing protocol, while Dexos, a GM licensed-brand, uses parts of the European ACEA testing protocol. Dexos has to meet Mercedes’ as well as Opel’s requirements.
The new GF-5 oils are available in both conventional and synthetic formulations, but the Dexos1 is only made as a synthetic. There are already certain oils on the market that meet the new GF-5 and Dexos1 designation, like Pennzoil Platinum and Quaker State Ultimate Durability.
Longer oil change intervals are part of the equation. GM doesn’t give a specific interval recommendation other than the oil-monitor’s, or specific driving conditions. Ford says 10k mile intervals are now ok. Somebody please let Jiffy Lube in on this.
And it’s ok to new use the new oils in older cars, just in case you were wondering.
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My local Honda dealer changes the oil once a year for nothing, so I don'care what they put in it. The AMG gets Mobil 1 every 10,000 miles, and never needs oil between changes. Maybe motor oil is just motor oil. Sorry Sigmund.
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