MINI Cooper Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey there, I wanted to ask everyone if ya'll feel that Mini Motor Oil is absolutely necessary? I don't think that BMW has engineered any super oil that makes it better than others. Plus, I spoke with some guys at Shuck's and Nappa and they said that Mobil 5W-30 Synthetic is what Corvette's use, and that is what they'd recommend for a "sports car" like the MCS. So what's everyone's take on this?
 

·
Sitting on a park bench..
Joined
·
1,183 Posts
I was just talking about this w/ a buddy of mine who runs a garage...he claims that Castrol "licenses" their oil from Mobil, so there's no issue putting Mobil 1 in the MINI...at $74 a pop at my dealer, I may just take him up on it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
171 Posts
Of course Mini Motor Oil is absolutely necessary - for BMW's bottom line! Other than that, nope.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Hammer said:
Of course Mini Motor Oil is absolutely necessary - for BMW's bottom line! Other than that, nope.
Well, what's so special about Mini Motor Oil, when there are plenty of other synthetic motor oils out there that are perfect for Sports Cars?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
209 Posts
There was a stunning in depth thread by CurtP with independent analysis of engine oils which listed two stand out top quality oils. One was Euro spec Mobil 5w 30 and 10w 30 and the other was Lubrication Engineers which is very difficult to find.

Some of the big name oils came severely unstuck during long term oil breakdown tests, so for peace of mind and an easy life Moby 1 would seem a safe bet. :)
 

·
Cruising In The Minge
Joined
·
773 Posts
Ive heard alot about Redline oil, anyone used this before?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
209 Posts
Babes, I heard it was good too, so looked into it and found that it has a great reputation but poor independently tested breakdown results.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
949 Posts
BMW branded oil is the EU spec Castrol Syntec which is much better than the off-the-shelf Syntec we have here in the US. Castrol does not license their oil from Mobil; let me assure you Castrol uses its own refineries to produce their products.

For an off-the-shelf oil, it's very difficult to beat Mobil 1 (at least until the new GF-4 oils make it to the market). Just keep in mind that not all oils are created equal, even if they are branded as "synthetic" - I have seen plenty of synthecs fail or do poorly in anti-wear tests, including "premium" and "exotic" (i.e., Redline, Amsoil, etc).

FWIW, Lubrication Engineers isn't too bad to get now - no more than it is with other oils that can't be found at the local car parts store anyway. The drawback is that it has to be bought in full cases (24 1-quart bottles) which can be a bit expensive to some. Last time I bought several cases of it, the price was just a little lower than Mobil 1 (which is typically $4.99/quart around here).
 

·
Motorer extraordinaire
Joined
·
131 Posts
I have heard that Castrol Syntec is fine. Just make sure it is the pure synthetic and not the synthetic blend. Catrol markets both.
 

·
All 4 wheels pointed down
Joined
·
656 Posts
Babes said:
Ive heard alot about Redline oil, anyone used this before?
I have used Redline Oil before! It is good stuff, although expensive! USD $8-9/quart! It has to be one of the few oils that actually smell halfway decent. I buddy of mine also used Redline on his Turbo Civic. Very good stuff!

Mobile 1 is very good too! At about half the price!

My $.02
 

·
MotorCityMadman
Joined
·
3,793 Posts
Yep, BMW puts all euro-spec Castrol Syntec in their cars. That's what you get when you take it in to the dealership for a change and that's what I assume "MINI Motor Oil" is. Hahaha...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
949 Posts
petecrosby said:
I have heard that Castrol Syntec is fine. Just make sure it is the pure synthetic and not the synthetic blend. Catrol markets both.
That's where the problem lies - US spec Castrol Syntec is a refined conventional, not a true synthetic. However there's no regulation in the US over the term "synthetic" so Castrol was allowed to continue to use the moniker.

speedynz - thanks :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
949 Posts
Hammer said:
My Corvette buddy swears by Amsoil. Is he a dufus? Where can one find these testing results?
He's not a dufus, but Amsoil likes to play marketing games. Some of the issues I have with Amsoil:

- They stil use the four-ball testing method that has been out of date for many years. This test is easier to pass than more current testing methods such as FALEX (pin-vee anti-wear test).

- They use too much phosphate in their additive package which can poison catalytic converters. This has caused them to fail API testing for a long time. They have recently reduced the phosphate content so they are eligible to be tested.

- They are constantly changing their formulations. While there's nothing wrong with making changes to their additive packages or base formulation, severe changes like Amsoil does make me nervous. Too much change will can cause reactions that can attack soft metals in engines (such as the bearings) from non-compatiblity and cross-contamination (from the residual oil from the last fill).

- Amsoil doesn't have their own refinery which means they contract the lowest bidder to make their oil. I suspect that is why their formulation changes constantly.

- I have heard of quite a few people who have had issues with the additives falling out of suspension in the oil (thick residue on the bottom of the bottles or barrels). Good indication that there is either a reaction going on between the additive package and additive carrier, or there is a problem with the blender.

- Anti-wear tests are all over the place. Sometimes they test well, other times they do poorly or fail.

Amsoil has too many problems, IMO, to be used on a regular basis and to charge the price they do. If you want something exotic and expensive to run in your car, look at Case International diesel engine oil ;)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
262 Posts
CurtP said:
That's where the problem lies - US spec Castrol Syntec is a refined conventional, not a true synthetic. However there's no regulation in the US over the term "synthetic" so Castrol was allowed to continue to use the moniker.

speedynz - thanks :D
I'm curious about this statement. Can you point me to any sort of independent testing to confirm this? I've never heard this particular claim about Syntec.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
949 Posts
Independent testing? I'm not sure what you're asking.

Castrol Syntec was reformulated sometime in late 1998 or early 1999 and they stopped using PAO's. Syntec now uses (at least in the US) a Group III base (refined and hydrocracked mineral oil). Mobil complained about Castrol to the BBB. NAD (National Advertising Division) of the BBB ruled in favor of Castrol (without any regulation, how could anyone prove that Group III base stock isn't synthetic?). The fact remains that Castrol Syntec is conventionally based, not synthetic (I thought it was widely known that Castrol uses Group III base stocks :confused: ). The part that gripes me the most is that Castrol is still allowed to market it as a full synthetic - I would have no issues with them if they marketed it to what it really is. Of course, if they did that, they couldn't charge the premium price :rolleyes:

FWIW, Mobil 1, Amsoil (and may others) use PAO's. Redline uses Diethers (which is also a full synthetic base stock).

The case number on NAD's website is 3526, but I don't have a subscription to their website (why isn't this available for the general public? :mad: ).
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top