Quaker State Challenges Castrol, Valvoline, Mobil To Motor Oil Duel

Quaker State's calling out its motor oil competitors, issuing a challenge to Mobil1, Valvoline and Castrol to a duel of wear protection. Exciting? No. Good marketing? Yeah, but only because we love conflict.

Quaker State's challenge to Mobil, Valvoline and Castrol is a challenge to determine which motor oil maker's full synthetic SAE 5W-30 motor oil provides the best "wear protection." A letter was sent from Quaker State chairman Steve Harman to executives responsible for Mobil1, Castrol and Valvoline, and a reprint of that exact letter was published in a full-page advertisement in today's edition of USA Today to make the motoring public aware of the challenge. The challenge? Here's what Quaker State has to say:

"The ASTM Sequence IVA wear test is the accepted, industry standard method to measure the potential for wear in the valve train area and the level of protection against that specific type of wear. The lower the score in the ASTM Sequence IVA the better, with 90 microns of wear being the maximum score accepted in order to be ILSAC GF-4 and API SM certified.

The test uses a Nissan 4-cylinder engine with an overhead camshaft and fixed slider followers. The engine is run under conditions simulating extended idling. Wear is measured on the camshaft lobes. This is an ideal position to measure wear because fixed slider followers create a condition where the camshaft lobes rotate against the non-rotating followers, creating high contact pressures and a potential for wear. "

Wow. Riveting. So, basically, just some really good marketing. Yup. Full press release below.

QUAKER STATE CHALLENGES MOTOR OIL COMPETITORS TO PUT THEIR PRODUCTS TO THE TEST

Brand to show America once and for all, that no other leading motor oil provides better wear protection

HOUSTON, March 20, 2009 – Quaker State is calling for an end of the "Wear Wars" today by challenging its major motor oil competitors to a motor oil comparison. Quaker State has issued a challenge to Mobil1, Valvoline and Castrol to show that no leading full synthetic SAE 5W-30 motor oil provides better wear protection in the ASTM Sequence IVA test than Quaker State Q HorsePower Full Synthetic — not Castrol, not Valvoline, not Mobil 1.

"In recent months we have seen all of the claims going back and forth among the brands we have challenged in relation to their product's wear protection abilities via Industry's ASTM Sequence IVA test," said Steve Harman, President Americas, Quaker State. "This must be confusing to consumers. Today, if our competitors will only agree, we pledge to bring clarity to this ‘Wear War,' by making public the scientific data that illustrates for consumers the actual wear result earned by each brand's chosen full synthetic motor oil."

Quaker State is so confident that its competitors' ILSAC GF-4 full synthetic motor oils currently available in the US do not provide better wear protection in the Sequence IVA test that it wants the public to know the results of the challenge. A letter was sent from Steve Harman to executives responsible for Mobil1, Castrol and Valvoline, and a reprint of that exact letter was published in a full-page advertisement in today's edition of USA Today to make the motoring public aware of the challenge.

Quaker State has arranged for a respected, third-party applied research and development organization to conduct a one-time, independent ASTM Sequence IVA test for each motor oil identified by the challenged brands. If the challenge is accepted, the testing firm Test Engineering Inc. will purchase off the shelf at a major national retailer the product that each brand respectively identifies for testing. The products will be marked as blind samples for the test which will be run with the results published at a 95 percent confidence level.

Competitors have been given until Friday, March 27th at 5 p.m. EST to respond. If a competitor chooses to participate, the wear results of the test will be released publicly to end the "Wear Wars."

Quaker State

Quaker State provides everyday drivers with a durable oil that can withstand the harsh conditions of everyday driving. In a time when value is more important than ever, Quaker State is offering consumers unsurpassed wear protection that helps maximize the performance of an engine at an affordable price.

In addition to lab testing, Quaker State's Q Horsepower has been tested in the harshest everyday driving conditions like those faced by New York City taxis. Q Horsepower has been tested in a dozen New York City taxis – with some vehicles accumulating more than 200,000 miles and some experiencing extended oil drains.

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These stringent testing environments provide the makers of Q Horsepower with the confidence to lay down the challenge.

Testing and the ASTM Sequence IVA

Under the supervision of Test Engineers Inc . Quaker State has employed independent, applied research and development organizations in San Antonio, Texas, to conduct the testing of each of the commercially available full synthetic motor oils.

The ASTM Sequence IVA wear test is the accepted, industry standard method to measure the potential for wear in the valve train area and the level of protection against that specific type of wear. The lower the score in the ASTM Sequence IVA the better, with 90 microns of wear being the maximum score accepted in order to be ILSAC GF-4 and API SM certified.

The test uses a Nissan 4-cylinder engine with an overhead camshaft and fixed slider followers. The engine is run under conditions simulating extended idling. Wear is measured on the camshaft lobes. This is an ideal position to measure wear because fixed slider followers create a condition where the camshaft lobes rotate against the non-rotating followers, creating high contact pressures and a potential for wear.

For more information on this challenge, the ASTM Sequence IVA wear test, and the full line-up of Quaker State products, visit www.QuakerState.com.

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