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Does that mean they changed additives to their oil?
Dunno what they changed. I just know they told me they no longer have an oil which meets MS-12991.
 
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Pennzoil Platinum is the superior oil to use by far. I was a Jiffy Lube manager for 3 years. It's not all hype by far and I actually had to take a class on this oil as well as others. The fact that it's made from natural gas and the additive package alone make it the best choice IMHO.
That actually means nothing at all. Making oil from natural gas doesn't make it exceptionally good; just a different (and cheaper, for them) way of producing an API group 3 oil. It doesn't make it an API Group 4 or 5 oil. It doesn't make it better than a PAO/POE blended oil. It doesn't determine the quality of the additive package.

Don't be fooled; the majors will make oils that are within a tight tolerance of each other for quality. There is ZERO reason for them to make the oil better than the specification, and plenty of reasons to reduce the cost so they can be more competitive on a Walmart shelf. They are all fighting for the same price point. Using higher end base oils or addivies than absolutely necessary serves them absolutely no purpose.

You'd have received the same impression from any training. I've heard this story from someone who worked for everyone of the majors. Valvoline, Mobil 1, Castrol, and Shell (Pennzoil/Quaker State). They all swear their oil is something special when in reality, it's mediocre, because that's all it needs to be in order to meet the specs it's formulated for.

If you want high end, or something of exceptionally high quality and performance, you'll look elsewhere.
 

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Dunno what they changed. I just know they told me they no longer have an oil which meets MS-12991.
Bet you all they changed nothing. I was told by an engineer at Motul that MS-12991 was borrowed from MB 229.5 with some extra regulatory limitations on sulfur levels due to California's laws. I maintain that any MB 229.5 spec oil will perform just fine in these cars at conservative intervals. I still believe oils from AMSOIL and Driven to be superior to any of the majors.
 

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Bet you all they changed nothing. I was told by an engineer at Motul that MS-12991 was borrowed from MB 229.5 with some extra regulatory limitations on sulfur levels due to California's laws. I maintain that any MB 229.5 spec oil will perform just fine in these cars at conservative intervals. I still believe oils from AMSOIL and Driven to be superior to any of the majors.
They no longer make the oil that met MS-12991.
 

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They no longer make the oil that met MS-12991.
That doesn't mean they changed the formula by any consequential amount. They may simply have determined it wasn't worth the testing or re-certification that's required every X number of years, for an engine in relatively low production numbers compared to their other oils. These certification tests aren't cheap to perform. We're talking $100k+ for all of the testing required.

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That doesn't mean they changed the formula by any consequential amount. They may simply have determined it wasn't worth the testing or re-certification that's required every X number of years, for an engine in relatively low production numbers compared to their other oils. These certification tests aren't cheap to perform. We're talking $100k+ for all of the testing required.

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Valvoline sells in Europe and the 1.4L has been used used in Fiats, Lancias, Alfas, Chryslers, and Jeeps. The engine is more common than you think.

The salient point is this: Valvoline, at this time, does not make any oil which they claim meets the FIAT spec.
 

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Valvoline sells in Europe and the 1.4L has been used used in Fiats, Lancias, Alfas, Chryslers, and Jeeps. The engine is more common than you think.

The salient point is this: Valvoline, at this time, does not make any oil which they claim meets the FIAT spec.
And my point is, knowing what I do after 8 years of studying automotive tribology, that I would not be concerned with the FCA spec because I have a good idea of what's in the FCA spec. There are many oils that do carry the approval, but are nonetheless perfectly suitable, if not moreso than the major options, for these engines.

If you insist on using something with the approval, that's fine, but I am speaking from a position of what product is the best for the application. Oxidation stability is EXTREMELY important, and AMSOIL and Motul offer key advantages in that area. Neither carry the aforementioned approval.

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To @Dancap , @XtremeRevolution , @Tazilon Brenner , and anybody else that is interested: I think I totally understand what Extreme is getting at with his concerns about oxidation. Years ago, I worked on Oldsmobile Rocket V-8's regularly, they were good engines, premium GM build with fitted Pistons etc. But they did have one major flaw in design: the exhaust passage for the EGR passed through the cylinder head between cylinders 3 & 5. The heat from the exhaust caused the rocker arms and pivots, valve guides and pushrods to suffer extreme wear, resulting in poor running and major repairs if good oil, changed per recommendations, was not used. This was due to the oil breaking down, burning (oxidation) and hence, not doing its job. Back then, us techs were not as insulated from the customers as we are today, so I often knew what oil brand customers wanted in their cars. Our standard brand back then was Oilzum, but we also would use Wolf's Head, Havoline, Pennzoil, and Quaker State if requested. My observations were that Quaker State was the worst - Pennzoil the best when it came to protection from wear, sludge, etc. (Quaker State is much different today - so no concern here now). My point is, Oxidation is a real thing! (I have used the words "burnt oil" elsewhere). So, yes, Xtreme, something to be concerned about for sure. That is one of the reasons why I recommend a quality oil that meets the specs, and changing it on a regular basis - from experience, from what I have seen. And, I agree with Taz. I want the oil in my car to meet ALL the specs the engine manufacturer specifies. Especially when the car is under warranty. Both Taz, through his excellent article on oils that meet Fiat's recommendations, and I through various posts on this forum, have indicated Amsoil is OK to use. Methinks the major point is, here, that Valvoline does not meet the MS-12991 spec anymore, and neither is it a "premium" oil in the sense that Xtreme regards as "premium" (And, I agree, oils such as Amsoil are "premium" - alas without the MS-12991 certification). Therefore, Valvoline should be avoided. Bottom line? Use a high quality oil, one that's on Taz's list, and a high quality - preferably OEM - filter, and change both on a regular basis, checking oil level periodically to avoid the oil level getting low. Hope I didn't p--s anybody off here, not my intention - this is a subject I feel very strongly about, just like you guys, based on my experience. Best, s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
And my point is, knowing what I do after 8 years of studying automotive tribology, that I would not be concerned with the FCA spec because I have a good idea of what's in the FCA spec. There are many oils that do carry the approval, but are nonetheless perfectly suitable, if not moreso than the major options, for these engines.

If you insist on using something with the approval, that's fine, but I am speaking from a position of what product is the best for the application. Oxidation stability is EXTREMELY important, and AMSOIL and Motul offer key advantages in that area. Neither carry the aforementioned approval.

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Thanks for introducing me to Amsoil. I think I will use them next. I like the fact that they also focus on turbochargers when it comes to their engine oil, which the 124 has.
 

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And turbochargers are a great reason to search out an oil that has Xtreme (no pun intended 😀) resistance to oxidation/burning. Turbochargers get hot! - even more than the rockers next to the EGR passage in those Rocket V-8's. Best, s.
 

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Thanks for introducing me to Amsoil. I think I will use them next. I like the fact that they also focus on turbochargers when it comes to their engine oil, which the 124 has.
Shoot me a PM when you're ready and I can get you a case of 12 quarts for a pretty good price.

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And turbochargers are a great reason to search out an oil that has Xtreme (no pun intended ) resistance to oxidation/burning. Turbochargers get hot! - even more than the rockers next to the EGR passage in those Rocket V-8's. Best, s.
It's not just the turbo use, which is a factor for sure, but the valvetrain as well. Normal engines can withstand a bit of varnish without too much negative consequence. These engines are far more sensitive. The entire multiair valvetrain relies on high pressure, tight tolerance oil passages, solenoids, valves, and other multiair components to operate optimally. As soon as you start building varnish, you compromise the reliability of that system.

5-10 years from now, you'll start to see pictures of what these valvetrains look like with some varnish and you'll understand what I'm stressing so heavily and why.

Here's some PDSC oxidation test data that a colleague of mine in the tribology world shared recently. "PDSC stands for Pressure Differential Scanning Calorimetry which tests the oxidative stability of the oil or rather how long of service, and how much abuse, the oil can withstand before oxidation begins to set in. The test is timed and stopped when oxidation spikes, measured in minutes. Notice the massive difference in service life between the cookie cutter API shelf oils and their boutique non-API counterparts.

Shelf API oils
Pennzoil UP 5W-30 - 57 minutes
Mobil 1 EP 5W-30 - 62 minutes
Valvoline AP 5W-30 - 68 minutes

Boutique non-API oils
Driven LS30 5W-30 - 105 minutes
Amsoil SS 5W-30 - 120 minutes
HPL HDEO 5W-30 - 172 minutes"

AMSOIL approximately doubled the extreme oxidation run time over other "good" oils. Changing oil more often is a way to mitigate some of the oxidation issues, but thermo-oxidation will continue to build deposits around high temp surfaces like piston rings and turbo components over time. You may not own your car by the time this matters, but it will eventually matter, especially if you drive your car the way it was intended.

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And my point is, knowing what I do after 8 years of studying automotive tribology, that I would not be concerned with the FCA spec because I have a good idea of what's in the FCA spec. There are many oils that do carry the approval, but are nonetheless perfectly suitable, if not moreso than the major options, for these engines.

If you insist on using something with the approval, that's fine, but I am speaking from a position of what product is the best for the application. Oxidation stability is EXTREMELY important, and AMSOIL and Motul offer key advantages in that area. Neither carry the aforementioned approval.

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Motul does certify for Fiat spec. AMSOIL does not, however, they list their 5W-40 FS Euro as a good oil when you use their oil finder. I spoke with a rep and he said if they list it on their oil finder as a compatible oil, they will back that oil with a warranty against an oil related failure.

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I was having a discussion about oil for 124s at the shop where I had my alignment done today. The tech tried to convince me Valvoline had an oil which meets our spec. I told they used to but no longer produce an oil that meets spec. So he tried to show me up and called Valvoline directly. He was quite surprised when they told him they have no oil which meets our spec.
 

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Motul does certify for Fiat spec. AMSOIL does not, however, they list their 5W-40 FS Euro as a good oil when you use their oil finder. I spoke with a rep and he said if they list it on their oil finder as a compatible oil, they will back that oil with a warranty against an oil related failure.

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That's surprising. They didn't have the approval listed when I called them a couple of years ago. Regardless, they make a better product than the majors do.

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That's surprising. They didn't have the approval listed when I called them a couple of years ago. Regardless, they make a better product than the majors do.

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I did several weeks of research on oils this Spring. Some of the "haves" and have nots" really surprised me.
 

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I might add, MOTUL is now an official sponsor of Fiat Club America.
 

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I might add, MOTUL is now an official sponsor of Fiat Club America.
That's good. Redline used to do that sort of thing before ConocoPhillips bought them.

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I know everyone here has his opinion, but Pennzoil will always be superior to the other brands. It's not just hype; the science proves it. The oil class I took went deep into the science of it versus the other brands and it came out on top by far. We had to learn the oil inside and out as well as WHY it was the best choice over others (i.e. Valvoline, AMSOL, Royal Purple, etc.) I can't disclose what I learned since it's proprietary info and I signed an NDA, but the difference and proof I witnessed was nothing short of remarkable. I've actually witnessed engines running sans oil that were running that oil prior with zero seizures or signs of damage. Industry leading additive package (i.e. friction modifiers, sludge control, antioxidants, anti-foam, corrosion inhibitors, demusifyers, dispersants, etc.) and superior starting base (natural gas, which is cleaner than crude oil) make all the difference. Meets and exceeds our manufacturer rec.


 

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That’s why it’s top three here! I don’t believe anyone put it down just most have their preference and it’s hard to sway a made up mind. I don’t think any of the top three would adversely effect our engines. I think a benefit of the penzoil is it’s price point is lower than comparable oils. For clarity top three I have found from months of research are Amsoil penzoil and redline.
 
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