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Trucking Efficiency Publishes Confidence Report on Low-Viscosity Lubricants

“The arrival of new categories of engine oils will help raise awareness of the fuel efficiency benefits of the large range of oils available.”—Mike Roeth, Operation Lead, Trucking Efficiency

June 28, 2016, New York, NY—The latest Confidence Report released today by the North American Council for Freight Efficiency and
Carbon War Room gives the industry a foundational understanding of low-viscosity oil and how it contributes
to efficiency.

It helps fleets rationalize their investment in low-viscosity engine oil by providing an unbiased overview of the oil’s benefits and challenges.

Since 2003, fleets have been ramping up their investments in lower-viscosity lubricants with adoption rates for engine oils reaching 40% among the largest, most efficiency-conscious fleets. However, adoption rates are much lower in the industry as a whole at 20%.

Study results show that Class 8 over-the-road fleets can realistically expect fuel savings in the range of 0.5% to 1.5% when switching from 15W-40 to 5W/10W-30 engine oil, whether the currently available CJ-4 class or the new CK-4 class available in December 2016. The savings from switching to the fuel-efficient FA-4 variant, available after December 2016, is expected to be 0.4% to 0.7% when compared to CJ-04/CK-4 5W/10W-30 oils.

The Confidence Report looks at other benefits of low-viscosity oil, such as being able to extend drain intervals, and also uncovers potential challenges of cost and compatibility across the entire fleet.

The study team spoke with fleets, lubricants and additives manufacturers, and engine builders and included reports from two case studies.

The report includes a Decision Guide and Payback Calculator to assist fleets in determining if low-viscosity oils are right for them.

Download the executive summary here.

Download the full report here.

About Confidence Reports

This report is part of our Confidence Report series, intended to help end users and manufacturers determine whether to adopt a specific technology or set of solutions. The series also includes tire pressure systems, 6×2 axle configurations, idle-reduction technology, electronically controlled transmissions, programmable engine parameters, low rolling resistance tires, lightweighting, downspeeding, trailer aerodynamics, and tractor aerodynamics, and an upcoming report on platooning. Promising technologies for additional Confidence Reports are currently being identified.

Trucking Efficiency created an interactive information platform at to help users make more confident adoption decisions by providing detailed information on efficiency technologies, including data from across a variety of fleets and best practices for adoption.

About Trucking Efficiency

Trucking Efficiency is a combined effort of the North American Council for Freight Efficiency and Carbon War Room to double the freight efficiency of North American goods movement through the elimination of market barriers to information, demand, and supply.

About North American Council for Freight Efficiency

The North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to doubling the freight efficiency of North American goods movement. NACFE operates as a nonprofit in order to provide an independent, unbiased research organization for the transformation of the transportation industry. Data is critical and NACFE is proving to help the industry with real world information that fleets can use to take action.

About Carbon War Room

Carbon War Room (CWR) was founded in 2009 as a global nonprofit by Sir Richard Branson and a group of likeminded entrepreneurs. It intervenes in markets to accelerate the adoption of business solutions that reduce carbon emissions at gigaton scale and advance the low-carbon economy. CWR merged with Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) in 2014 and now operates as an RMI business unit. The combined organization engages businesses, communities, institutions, and entrepreneurs to transform global energy use to create a clean, prosperous, and secure low-carbon future.

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