When you buy Shell Rotella® you are relying on us to protect your vehicle. We spend countless hours testing our products, and those of our competitors in a practice called “competitor benchmarking,” to validate performance against claims. At Shell, we believe maintaining your trust in our products is important, so we are sharing the data with you.
Recently, the Shell Heavy Duty Engine Oil technology team recognized that Mobil Delvac 1300 Super 15W-40 did not perform well in oxidation benchmarking tests, so we performed a fired engine test that measures oxidation, the Volvo T-13. This test was devised to set the bar for oxidation performance for the API CK-4 category of engine oil, designed to include advanced oxidation stability and shear stability.
Oxidation stability of an engine oil refers to its capability to resist thermal and chemical breakdown during engine operation. It is a key indicator of an engine oil’s ability to protect the engine itself and its hardware. Using an engine oil that lacks oxidation stability can lead to maintenance and performance issues like reduced oil drain intervals, shorter engine life, reduced engine efficiency and fuel economy.
The Volvo T-13 is a very severe 360-hour duration, high temperature oil oxidation test. It is a key barrier against engine oils with inadequate oxidation protection. The test limits for the Volvo T-13 focus on two standard measurements: Kinematic Viscosity at 40oC (KV 40) in the last 60 hours of the test (ASTM D445) and oxidation by infra-red spectroscopy. Viscosity stability is especially critical over the last 60 hours of the engine test.
To pass these limits for API CK-4, Volvo VDS 4.5 and Cummins CES 20086 approvals, the test oil must surpass 360 hours before breaking the API and OEM limits for oxidation measured by infra-red spectroscopy and KV 40 in the last 60 hours of the test. The sample of Mobil Delvac 1300 Super 15W-40 engine oil does not meet the minimum API or OEM requirements. This means that the product does not meet the requirements that are claimed on the packaging and marketing materials.
Shell Rotella® T4 Triple Protection 15W-40 engine oil has minimal increase in the peak oxidation and the kinematic viscosity measured at 40 degrees Celsius and meets the required limits. Our performance in the Volvo T-13 test is evidence that Shell Rotella T4 Triple Protection 15W-40 engine oil can enable OEMs to deliver the promise of fuel efficiency and can help customers protect their equipment. All oils are not created equal. Make sure you’re getting the protection you deserve.