What’s New in the ACEA 2022 European Oil Sequences for Heavy-Duty Engines?

May 2, 2022
Posted by Becky Zhao , Business Manager China, Commercial Engines, Matthew Bentley, Product Manager, Marine Engine Oil, Alex Brewster, Product Manager, Commercial Engine Lubricants, Greg Matheson, Product Manager, Commercial Engine Lubricants, Nigel Britton, Technical Manager, Commercial Engine Lubricants

Topics: ACEA, Specifications

On May 1, 2022, the widely-anticipated 2022 ACEA European Oil Sequences for Heavy Duty Engines came into effect. The sequences prescribe the minimum quality level of service-fill oils demanded by European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) members for use in their vehicles. 

In this video, we review the significant changes to the sequences, the new and updated engine tests, approval timelines and their impact on the global heavy-duty commercial vehicle market.   



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Video Transcript

The ACEA specification updates provide the performance upgrades to the whole industry.
Many Original equipment manufacturers or OEMs, rely on the ACEA baselines as their primary lubricant recommendation in the vehicle handbook or as an alternative, if an OEM approved lubricant is no longer available.  And the latest to see it update incorporates several different changes to the categories.
In the lower SAPS categories, we see ACEA E6 being replaced with ACEA E8 and ACEA E9 being replaced with ACEA E11. And this will be for new vehicles with aftertreatment devices. For legacy vehicles we see ACEA E4 and ACEA E7 higher SAPS categories being maintained to provide protection to vehicles already in the fleet.
One aspect of the changes is the inclusion and adoption of API-focused tests. This helps to bring greater global synergies across the API and ACEA categories and aligning the global requirements for minimum lubricant performance.
The inclusion of the T-13 test brings new levels of oxidation control performance to ACEA E8 and E11. Good oxidation performance is important throughout the life of the oil drain interval because it helps to prevent oil thickening and acid formation within the engine.  
And the Caterpillar Oil Aeration Test in ACEA E8 and E11 incorporates improved aeration performance.
Control of oil aeration is absolutely critical to engine operation as it can lead to oil starvation and loss of power and accelerated engine wear. 
Additional changes include an increased focus on biodiesel cleanliness and biodiesel compatibility through increased piston merit requirements in the OM646 biodiesel cleanliness test.  So biodiesel can change lubricant qualities affecting its ability to continuously protect the engine, and we know that API categories do not have the requirement to check for lubricant biodiesel compatibility, while ACEA has a test that looks at the biodiesel compatibility of lubricants.
There is also an inclusion of the latest engine hardware in the form of the OM471 test, which brings both steel Pistons and Euro VI technology. This new engine test is included in  ACEA E8 and replaces the OM501LA.  
The ACEA E4 category has seen the introduction of the OM471 test, the option remains to utilize OM501LA data to support this category. The OM501LA has also been replaced in both the ACEA E7 and ACEA E11 categories.
While the OM 501LA data can still be used to support these claims, we see the introduction of the Caterpillar 1N single cylinder engine test in ACEA E7 and the introduction of the Caterpillar C13 engine test in ACEA E11.
As OEM's focus more and more on increasing efficiency and reducing emissions whilst maintaining durability, future updates to the ACEA categories will likely include two new ACEA F categories, designed to offer enhanced fuel economy to the end user through a lower HTHS viscosity, in comparison to the conventional sequences that we see today.
With the latest ACEA standard upgrades, there's a two-year transition period where customers will have time to upgrade their products within the market. This is important because, at the end of the two-year transition period, any products that have not upgraded to the latest ACEA standards risk no longer being able to carry the ACEA credential.