The drive to improve fuel economy has been taking place for some time and to do this, the industry has been moving towards lower viscosity solutions, demonstrated by launch of the API FA-4 oil category in 2016. The category was formulated to get the best out of the more fuel efficient, low emissions diesel engines. Lower viscosity API FA-4 oils minimize frictional losses between moving components of the engine and reduce pumping and rotational losses, resulting in less viscous drag and improved fuel economy. This enables engines to run more efficiently and use less fuel, while still offering excellent levels of wear protection by delivering oil more effectively to moving parts within the engine.
Many Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) are already benefitting from fuel economy focused products. OEMs including Kenworth, Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, Detroit Diesel and Cummins recommend or allow lower viscosity grade oils, such as SAE 10W-30 and 5W-30. Some OEMs, like Detroit Diesel, are factory filling some units with API FA-4 oils with an even lower HTHS viscosity to provide even better fuel economy.
SAE 10W-30 and SAE 5W-30 engine oils have demonstrated fuel economy savings and are available today without significant capital expense. If fleet owners switch to an API CK-4 oil like DURON™ SHP 10W-30 or DURON UHP 5W-30, or API FA-4 oils like DURON Advanced 10W-30 or 5W-30, versus conventional SAE 15W-40 viscosity grades, they can improve fuel economy while ensuring their engines remain protected in even the most extreme climates.
With PC-12 on the horizon and the journey toward low viscosity engine oils set to continue, the next generation of heavy-duty lubricants will be formulated to support OEMs and fleets meet the new US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) heavy-duty on-highway regulations.
Expected to have two categories based on HTHS values and face new performance tests, PC-12 lubricants are expected to offer crucial engine protection and even greater fuel economy and performance benefits.
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