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The last of the engine oil specifications?
Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

The last of the engine oil specifications?

Engine oil licensing and specifications are typically a cooperative effort between oil and additive industries, vehicle and engine manufacturers. Ever-increasing complexity in specification development has stretched the time taken to develop industry standards and costs are ballooning, with increasingly vocal calls for change. The International Fluids Consortium (IFC) is a global syndicate of 11 OEMs wanting for substantive change. On page 10, we examine the break-away group’s plans to develop and maintain their own global fluid specifications.

For the first time, ACEA has split its light- and heavy-duty specifications in the 2021 revision of the ACEA Engine Oil Sequences. We scrutinise delays to the ACEA Heavy Duty Engine Oil Sequences on page 14. API has also commenced work on a new heavy-duty engine oil standard that it says will align with ambitious future goals for fuel economy and emissions and forthcoming engine technology. We review the likely timings for PC-12 on page 32.

It has been one year since India implemented Bharat Stage VI (BS-VI) emissions standards to regulate the output of air pollutants. With attention turning to zero-emission vehicles, we examine if it is the end-of-the-line for emission standards, or whether India should follow the European roadmap and start discussions on Bharat Stage VII (BS-VII).

Vicky Villena Denton, F&L Asia Ltd. Editor-in-chief and CEO

We are on the threshold of an alternative fuels’ revolution, with electrification ushering the light-duty fleet into a new driving age. Some analysts believe the adoption of electric vehicles (EV) will shadow the path of mobile phone technology. We investigate barriers to the adoption of light- and heavy-duty EVs on page 36. Despite the growth in EVs, there are currently no controlled test procedures to evaluate fluids and determine the optimum choice for a particular application. The Advanced Fluids for Electrified Vehicles (AFEV) consortium hopes to determine these tools. On page 18, we consider the SwRI-led consortium’s endeavours in materials compatibility, heat transfer, high-speed durability, and oxidation.

In Europe, the reign of the internal combustion engine may soon be over. The European Commission has released its “Fit for 55” climate policy package—the roadmap to achieving Europe’s immediate climate goals— which includes the abolition of petrol and diesel cars in just 14 years. The proposal has drawn the ire of both the automotive and alternative fuels industries—who believe regulation should exclude fossil fuels, not propulsion technologies. We assess the implications of the climate policy proposal on page 22.

There is growing interest in green hydrogen worldwide to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. What will be the impact of green hydrogen on future lubricants consumption? On page 30, we explore potential growth opportunities for lubricant manufacturers in this sector.