Kline estimates that global lubricant additive demand grew by 1% in 2015

Consulting firm Kline & Co., based in Parsippany, N.J., U.S.A., estimates that lubricant additive consumption grew by 1.0% in 2015. This is forecast to increase by 1.6% through 2019.  Since 2010, the global lubricant additive market has grown at 1.8% per annum, driven by growth in lubricant demand as well as increasing  lubricant quality, especially in emerging markets.

The global growth rate for lubricant additives varies significantly across function class. Kline said. The focus on extended drain intervals, engine cleanliness, and fuel economy is driving the need for more dispersants, antioxidants and friction modifiers, while the increasing use of multi-grade engine oils is driving the need for more viscosity index improvers. However, compatibility issues with vehicle emission control devices, is restricting growth in the use of detergents and antiwear additives, Kline said.

Heavy duty motor oils, passenger car motor oils, and, in the industrial lubricants segment, metalworking fluids, are the top additive-consuming categories, accounting for three-fourths of total additive consumption. Lube additive demand for metalworking fluids showed strong recovery in 2012-2014, following a decline in 2008-2012. Except for passenger car motor oils and metalworking fluids, demand growth has slowed, and there was a decline in demand in all product categories, Kline said.

“The global lubricant additive market will grow in line with overall lube demand growth. In the automotive engine oil segment, penetration of new quality levels, the shift to light viscosity oils, and extended drain intervals will drive changes in the type of additives used,” said Milind Phadke, director in Kline’s Energy Practice.

“In the metalworking fluids industry, the key formulation drivers include: compliance with HSE requirements (elimination of harmful chemicals), introduction of new machining techniques, and changes in metals processed. In general industrial oil formulation will be driven by the severity of operation, reduction in equipment size, extension of service intervals, the use of vegetable oils, and the displacement of Group I by Group II and Group III basestocks,” he added.

These findings are available in the recently published Global Lubricant Additives: Market Analysis and Opportunities report from Kline.

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