Although SAE 5W-30 accounts for the majority of the passenger car motor oil (PCMO) consumed in the US, demand for the grade continues to decline as some of the leading Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) shift to lower viscosity grade PCMOs in an effort to improve fuel economy. The biggest beneficiary of the shift is SAE 0W-20. Currently accounting for roughly 10% of PCMO consumed in the US, demand for the 0W-20 viscosity grade is expected to nearly triple over the next 10 years. Because of this, the PQIA will be examining an increasing number of 0W-20s moving forward as more of these products populate retail shelves.
Since 2014, the PQIA examined 22 samples of 0W-20 represented by 15 brands. The results of the tests conducted on all of the samples examined meet the SAE J300 specifications for the 0W-20 viscosity and are consistent with the API Service Categories shown on the product labels.
Including multiple testing of certain brands due to their preponderance on store shelves, the average NOACK volatility for the 0W-20s examined by PQIA to date is 12.48%. Click graphic below for the average and data distribution of NOACK, viscosity, phosphorus, and cold crank results for the 0W-20s examined by PQIA since 2014. These charts help to illustrate that differences do exist among motor oils.