When BP introduced Super Visco-Static last year, we said it beat oil fatigue.
What we didn’t say was why your engine was more likely to suffer from oil fatigue in 1973 than in the past.
The reason, in a word, is progress. In 1972 alone, progress put another million cars on our roads.
Took the number of motorway miles to 1,067.
And played a big part in the worsening traffic congestion in our towns and cities.
Progress has also made the car engine a very different animal than it used to be.
How does all this affect your oil? We’ll tell you.
When multi-grade oil is new, it has a thick protective ‘body’ because of the polymeric viscosity improvers in it.
When the engine gets hot,these tiny molecules expand to slow down the thinning rate of the oil. (The thinner the oil gets, the less it protects and the more you use.)
Until recently, though, these viscosity improvers have been minced up very early in life by the chopping action of your engine.
When that happens (and it can happen to normal high-performance oils only a few hundred miles after an oil change) nothing can stop your oil getting thinner and thinner.
So what started life as a 20-50 oil can quickly become a 20-40, or even a 20-30 oil.
To stop this thinning process, or oil fatigue as technologists call it, BP use a new range of base oils, additives and viscosity index improvers.
A formula that makes Super Visco-Static much tougher than ordinary oils.
And much more resilient.
Instead of being chopped up by the engine action, it remains full-bodied from one oil change to the next.
Having made this breakthrough, we conducted a series of independently observed tests.
Bench tests in America using amongst others an Oldsmobile V8 engine.
A series of RAC road tests over here using a wide range of production cars.
The results were dramatic. Super Visco-Static not only kept its full strength between oil changes, but cut oil consumption by as much as 15%
So by using it in your engine, you’ll get all the protection of a new oil (and all the economy) not for just a few hundred miles. But from one oil change to the next.
And that, gentlemen, is progress.
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