Automotive lubricants continue to expand as we accelerate for more fuel-efficient engines with longer lifespans. This can be seen in many areas, such as the advancement of synthetic engine oils and fully-synthetic engine oils. One of the most interesting areas can also be seen in the range of new viscosity grades established by the Society of Automotive Engineers, or SAE. One of the more intriguing lubricants to hit the market in current modern years is SAE 0W-16. There are several vehicles require this low-viscosity grade as it stands out in the shelves of the oil suppliers. To obtain this low-viscosity grade, a premium fully synthetic formulation is mandatory. This advanced fully synthetic engine oil has been in use for nearly two decades as it improves the engine performance, decreases warmup time, and provides exceptional engine protection. Do you need this oil for your vehicle? What makes it different from other oil viscosities presently available?
Not SAE 16
First, let’s establish one thing. 0W16 is not SAE 16, which has been announced by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) back in April 2013. SAE 16 is what’s called “straight weight” oil, which is a new high temperature viscosity oil infrequently used in modern passenger cars. On the other hand, 0W16 oil is now being mass produced for use in a number of vehicles. You’ll find a wide range of manufacturers.
What Is 0W16?
Most of the recent generation of passenger vehicles on the road today call for either 5W20 or 0W20 motor oil. 0W16 marks an even more refined oil that is designed for super-tight tolerances in newer engines. In the U.S. markets, it is part of the rollout of GF-6B oil, which is part of the ILSAC GF-6 program. Interestingly, this oil is not backwards compatible and should only be used in engines rated specifically for GF-6B type oils. Using it in an engine designed for GF-6A oil could result in damage (Follow the manufacturer’s instructions). SAE 0W16 lubricants now bear the API SN-PLUS and API SN-PLUS Recourse Conserving donut certification sign. OEM Certifications may also be found on the bottle.
What Are API SN-PLUS and API SP?
In 2017, The American Petroleum Institute (API) Lubricants Standards Group has approved the implementation of the Grade SN-PLUS, which is the latest specification that can be used in combination with API SN and API SN Resource Conserving. This Lubricant grade is designed to perform and protect against low-speed pre-ignition in the engines with turbocharging and direct injection. This grade oil is suitable for engines that require API SN, API SN with Resource Conserving, or ILSAC GF-5. In 2020, the American Petroleum Institute introduced the latest service category for gasoline engines (API SP). It meets the modern performance requirements issued by ILSAC including GF-6A and GF-6B. This API grade is suitable for the latest established SAE grade 0W16 as well as a number of other lightweight viscosities offering longer change intervals which helps the environment and save your maintenance cost.
Which Engines Require 0W16 Oil?
To be completely clear here – do not use 0W16 oil in your engine if your owner’s manual does not specify it. Using a lighter weight oil in an engine designed for a heavier oil weight can result in overheating, friction, and premature wear and tear. Currently, the only automakers creating engines designed for use with 0W16 oil are Honda and Toyota, and they are primarily hybrid engines, as well as small but powerful turbocharged engines. Although engines have evolved and most new engines feature an oil pump that can deal with light weight oil grades, at the time of this writing, no Honda or Toyota engines using this oil are currently sold in the United States.
What Benefits Does 0W16 Offer?
0W16 offers quite a few advantages thanks to its unique features. For instance, because of its low viscosity formulation, this oil can dramatically improve engine and fuel efficiency. The balanced additives in the formulation help provide better lubrication, as well as protection against wear and tear. This lightweight oil is also well suited for use in cold situations, as it provides faster cold starts and speeds up lubrication in cold environments. Finally, this is an advanced detergent motor oil, which means it helps reduce damaging deposits and keeps the engine cleaner, for longer periods. Both of import auto manufacturers and domestic will be switching to 0W16 in the coming years due to the increased fuel economy standards that are coming into force in 2025. In consonance with several engineers and oil manufacturers, the decrease of four viscosity points could really enhance fuel economy by up to 2%.
What are the differences between 0W16 and 0W20?
SAE 0W16 oil has performed better in terms of fuel economy than SAE 0W20 engine oil. It provides you quick engine starts in cold temperatures. Some people may be concerned that due to its low viscosity, it can cause some issues such as higher oil consumption and increased wear. However, those concerns have been addressed. According to both user manuals of 2018 Honda and Camry state that 0W16 right choice for optimizing fuel economy and quick cold-weather starting.
While there are currently no applications in the United States Markets for SAE 0W16, they are coming. Honda and Toyota will eventually roll out there more fuel efficient engines here, and other automakers will also follow suit. There are already several oil manufacturers offering 0W16 oil in the retail market, despite there being few existing applications for this oil.