ATIEL welcomes new ACEA light-duty engine oil specifications
Photo courtesy of ACEA

ATIEL welcomes new ACEA light-duty engine oil specifications

ATIEL, the Technical Association of the European Lubricants Industry, welcomed the release of the new ACEA engine oil specifications for light-duty vehicles.

New claims can be made against the 2021 oil sequences starting 1 May 2021. From 1 May 2022 onwards, the 2021 ACEA light-duty oil sequences are mandatory for all new claims.

Since their introduction in 1996 the ACEA Oil Sequences have been updated periodically to ensure that engine oils can meet the ever-changing requirements of the latest engine technologies. For the first time, ACEA 2021 has separated the light duty and heavy duty oil sequences to allow a more flexible approach to updating the specifications. 

ACEA 2021 updates the light-duty sequences to replace old engine tests that have reached their end of life, to allow a continuation of the engine oil development process for vehicles already in market. The new tests run on more up-to-date engine hardware but allow oil marketers to continue to supply oils with proven field performance. The two new categories published in ACEA 2021 introduce several new performance parameters and give oil marketers an opportunity to demonstrate the performance of their lubricants in the most modern vehicle technology.

The two new Categories, C6 and A7/B7, for the first time introduce low speed pre-ignition (LSPI), timing chain wear and diesel turbocharger performance limits into the ACEA Sequences. C6 also includes a new fuel economy test. Whilst many lubricants already exceed original equipment manufacturer (OEM) requirements for these parameters, including them in ACEA 2021 gives the industry a sound baseline to ensure lubricants perform in the latest engines. 

The addition of tests from both the American Petroleum Institute or API (the LSPI and chain wear test) and Japan Automobile Standards Organization or JASO (the new fuel economy test for C6) helps to increase the global applicability of the ACEA Sequences, as well as giving oil developers the confidence of running test programs in well-established engine tests.

ATIEL contributed significantly in collaboration with ACEA and ATC (the European additive manufacturers association) to ensure the release of the new ACEA Light-Duty Sequences is a positive outcome serving all automotive industry stakeholders, and particularly for consumers.

The current European system provides a framework to engage on existing and emerging technical issues and trends impacting engine design and use, and their potential effects on lubricant performance and formulation. The good cooperation between ACEA, ATIEL and ATC underlines the value of developing specifications that take into account the needs of both vehicle hardware and lubricant technology, to allow the right quality lubricants to become widely available across the market.