05 Jan, 2021
Exploring New SAE Oil Grades: SAE 8 and 12
By James

Anyone who has ever purchased motor oil has had to deal with SAE oil grades. These are the numbers and letters written on the oil bottle that denote its applicability for specific engine tolerances – SAE 30, or 5W20, for instance. However, the quest to produce vehicles that achieve higher fuel economy with a longer use life and less need for maintenance continues to drive innovation in the lubricant industry. To that end, two new oil grades were recently introduced – SAE 8 and SAE 12.

Anyone who has ever purchased motor oil has had to deal with SAE oil grades. These are the numbers and letters written on the oil bottle that denote its applicability for specific engine tolerances – SAE 30, or 5W20, for instance. However, the quest to produce vehicles that achieve higher fuel economy with a longer use life and less need for maintenance continues to drive innovation in the lubricant industry. To that end, two new oil grades were recently introduced – SAE 8 and SAE 12.

Why New Oil Grades?

Why were additional oil grades needed? Really, it comes down to the push for improved fuel economy and greater reliability within passenger vehicles. In order to achieve fuel economy improvements, higher technology engines with tighter tolerances are being designed and manufactured. Conventional grade motor oils are not well suited for these engines, so new oil types must be developed that offer low viscosity, combined with good high-temperature high-shear rate (HTHS) viscosity. This is necessary to reduce hydrodynamic friction between moving parts within the engine.

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