Bulletin - High Temperature High Shear (HTHS)

Attn: Classic, Muscle & Race Car Owners

Re: The Latest Government Oil Standards Are A Major Concern For Classic, Muscle & Race Car Owners, Especially Those Currently Using Diesel Oils In Their Gasoline Engines

New government regulations requiring auto manufacturers to meet ever-increasing fuel mileage minimums are forcing changes in areas that can affect the mechanical health of your classic or project car. And worse yet, no one is stepping up to tell you about these changes.

One major change you should be aware of is what’s going into the motor oils you may have trusted for years. New API requirements the oil manufacturers must meet are designed for new vehicles. But modern engines with full roller valvetrains have very different lubrication requirements than a muscle car engine. Modern engines can be engineered specifically to work with these new oils, but if your engine wasn’t built to these new specs, you’re essentially left out in the cold.

Even if the bottle of oil you’ve been using says it has the same viscosity, chances are it now has a lower High Temperature High Shear (HTHS) viscosity. Although it’s related, HTHS isn’t the same as a standard viscosity rating. HTHS is a measure of how well oil protects in the toughest environments your engine creates – areas where the temperature is highest and the friction is the greatest. Lower HTHS viscosity generally means a thinner oil which can improve fuel economy by reducing the amount of horsepower required to pump it throughout the engine. But a lower HTHS viscosity also usually comes at the expense of wear protection.

Motor oils with a low HTHS can help provide a small improvement in fuel economy in engines. But when it comes to protection for high-horsepower engines or classic engines with flat tappet valvetrains, that increase may not be worth it. After all, who cares if you are improving your fuel mileage if the oil you are using is slowly destroying your expensive engine? Many owners of classic cars, muscle cars and race cars will be forced to choose a power-robbing, higher-viscosity oil just to provide a minimal level of protection.

And the situation is only going to get worse. For example, for years many hot rodders have used diesel motor oils as both a break-in and everyday oil for their performance engines because the diesel engines still contained the high levels of ZDDP in the additive packages that also work well in muscle car engines. But that’s all changed, and there is even a new API heavy-duty diesel engine oil category that is currently under development for 2016 which will reduce the HTHS – and the usefulness of these oils for hot rodders – even further. Diesel motor oils used to be a convenient and cheap resource for a break-in oil, but that’s simply no longer true. Because of API changes, these oils are no longer capable of reliably protecting engine components during the critical break-in process.

But that doesn’t mean all is lost. In fact, you may not even be forced to choose between a high-viscosity oil for proper protection and low viscosity for good power production. Driven Racing Oil™ has made a major technological leap by becoming the only motor oil provider that is using a new synthetic base oil in all of its blends.

The new base stock is called mPAO, and it is literally a next-generation lubricant. The name is a lot of scientific mumbo jumbo that most of us don’t care about, but what this stuff does will impress anybody that understands the difference between pistons and petunias. By using an mPAO base for creating its performance lubricants, Driven is able to create a lightweight motor oil that still has a high HTHS viscosity to give you the best of both worlds. The science of how mPAO works goes all the way down to the shape of the molecules, but the result is an oil that’s less sensitive to heat, doesn’t break down under extreme friction and just plain works better.

Consider that lubrication scientists use something called a “viscosity index” to compare the quality of different base oils. The index is based on Pennsylvania Crude, which is the highest quality conventional oil you can drill for. PA Crude has a viscosity index of 100, and other conventional oils fall somewhere below that. Until now, the very best synthetic base oil has been PAO, which is quite a bit better than any conventional oil. Its viscosity index is 140. Now that you know that, you can get an idea of exactly how much more promise mPAO holds with a viscosity index that’s an incredible 200!

What all this means is that in order for other oils to even approach the protection provided by Driven’s new mPOA-based oils, they will have to add other chemicals, known viscosity index modifiers. These break down over time as they are subjected to heat and friction. But since mPAO is the base stock the oil is created from, it won’t degrade over time and provides the same protection after 5,000 miles or 5,000 laps as is did right out of the bottle.

Driven is currently the only oil manufacturer that offers this next-generation mPAO base in its oils. There is only one laboratory producing this specific material and Driven purchased the first batch. Every Driven synthetic oil already contains the new mPAO base oil, and Driven will continue to buy and blend mPAO base oils as future batches are made of this new material.

Even when a greater supply of mPAO becomes available, it’s unrealistic that any other manufacturers will begin using it anytime soon. The big oil manufacturers have already completed their formulations to meet the API criteria that just came out in 2011. Switching from PAO, or any other base stock, to mPAO would require re-certifying to the API standard, and no manufacturer will be willing to spend the money necessary to do that until the next round of API standards comes out in 2016.

The proof of Driven’s commitment to superior quality comes from the fact that while many companies selling so-called performance oils say their stuff is the best, only Driven Racing Oil puts the very same oil it sells to you in every Joe Gibbs Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race car. And there’s no bait-and-switch common with many of the sponsors who provide their race teams with specially blended lubricants not available to the general public. In NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racing, performance is the only thing that matters because the difference in one position in the final standings can mean millions of dollars–so you’d better believe no short cuts are taken in the production of this high-grade motor oil. Joe Gibbs Racing spent more than $1,000,000 on engine parts developing Driven Racing Oil – a small price to pay to help win seven NASCAR championships.

Winning championships at the highest levels of motorsports is the primary goal of Driven Racing Oil, so while other brands may claim to be performance oils, only Driven backs it up by actually racing the same stuff you can buy on the ultimate proving ground – the race track.