LOUISVILLE, Ky — Truck owners need to start looking at their lubricant choices as part of their overall fuel economy strategy, according to Jim Gambill, North America Commercial and Industrial brand manager, for Chevron Products Company. And when they are willing to do so, they will come to understand that lighter viscosity lubricants can also be lighter on their pockets.
Chevron announced its latest product, Delo 400 XLE Synblend SAE 10W-30 at the recent Mid-America Trucking Show. The synthetic motor oil shows up to 3.6% fuel economy improvement in short-haul, class 6 vehicles and up to 1% improvement in long-haul, class 8 trucks compared to SAE 15W-40 oil, according to Gambill.
The product is formulated for use in modern on-highway, low emissions engines as well as older diesel engines. It can also be used in modern off-highway engines where an SAE 10W-30 viscosity grade is recommended, including those adapted for future emissions standards in construction, agriculture, marine and mining applications.
The new blend follows the release late last summer of Chevron’s Delo 400 LE synthetic 5W-30 engine oil, which the company says can improve fuel mileage by up to 2% in Class 8 long-haul vehicles and 4.5% in medium-duty trucks.
Other products in Chevron’s line of heavy-duty motor oils focused on delivering fuel economy include Delo 400 LE Synthetic SAE 5W-40, Delo; and Delo 400 NG SAE 15W-40.
For Gambill, the difference made by the lighter viscosity oils is akin to avoiding swimming in a pool full of molasses.
“That’s what your engine is doing. Even a little change is important to fuel economy since you are doing it at 1500 times a minute. The trick is to still be able to protect your equipment,” he said, adding that the new formulations are still buttressed with strong soot dispersancy and wear control.
Despite the apparent advantages, Gambill concedes there is hard work ahead to convince owner/operators to give lower-viscosity oils a try.
“The big fleets have mostly decided to go this way but the owner/operators have always done 15W-40 and they like to stick with stuff they know works. I don’t believe it’s an issue of trust. When there is something new there is healthy skepticism. I recommend they speak to their engine OEM about these oils. All the major OEMs approve of them,” Gambill said.
Delo 400 XLE Synblend SAE 10W-30 is approved for API Service Categories CJ-4, CI-4 PLUS, CI-4, CH-4 and SM. It also meets the requirements of Caterpillar ECF-3, ECF-2, Cummins CES 20081, DDC 93K218, Mack EO-O Premium Plus, Renault VI RLD-3 and Volvo VDS-4.
“The OEMs are now driven by the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and that’s why they are looking at these oils. We are one piece of their fuel economy tool set,” Gambill said.
Canadian truck owners may also be leading the way when it comes to adopting lighter viscosity oils.
“Canadian customers seem more willing to listen to data,” Gambill said, adding that the ability of low viscosity base stocks to provide consistent engine starting for vehicles operating in sub-zero temperatures is another feature drawing the attention of Canadian buyers.
Delo 400 XLE Synblend SAE 10W-30 is now available in drums across North America and will be available in bulk in April, 2013. Jugs will be available by June 2013. Please contact Chevron or your local lubricant marketer for more information on availability and package styles. It is backwards compatible with previous API Oil Service Categories and engine models.
For more information on Delo 400 XLE Synblend SAE 10W-30 and the Delo line of fuel economy focused engine oils, go to www.ChevronDelo.com <http://www.ChevronDelo.com> .