SN Plus First Use Set for May 1st

Keywords: API, Base Oil,

The American Petroleum Institute advised yesterday that May 1 will be the first licensing date for API SN Plus, the supplemental classification for passenger car motor oils.

In mid-March API staff members had proposed pushing back the date until mid-June to allow oil suppliers more time to prepare products and get them market. Automakers pushed back on that proposal, urging the organization to stick to a May 1 date that developers of the classification had targeted.

API agreed after seeking input from oil marketing members.

May 1 will now be the first date when marketers are permitted to sell products depicted as complying with SN Plus and bearing API’s donut trademark for those classifications. Oils licensed as API SN Plus and Resource Conserving may bear API’s starburst trademark, beginning on that date.

Marketers may identify oils before that date as meeting the requirements of the supplemental classification but may not bear the trademark or state or imply licensing.

API invoked provisional licensing for ASTM D7528, a new bench test referred to as the ROBO test, in order to alleviate concerns about a months-long backup at test labs. Marketers with products that are otherwise demonstrated to meet the classification’s requirements will be allowed an additional six months to document passing results from the ROBO test.

The lubricant industry developed SN Plus at the request of automakers, following repeated delays to ILSAC GF-6, the next full upgrade for passenger car motor oil specifications for the North American market. Originally scheduled to come to market in 2016, GF-6 is now on track for first licensing in 2020.