Tested to perform The evolution of our strongest ever oil
We want to be sure that Castrol EDGE has the strength to adapt to the way you want to drive, whatever the conditions and environment. That’s why our partnerships with some of the world’s best motorsport are so invaluable. The knowledge we gain from the extremes of racing at goes directly into our road oils.
In this section you can discover what happens behind the scenes – on the racetrack and in the lab.
A heritage for pushing the limits
For over a century Castrol has developed oils and lubricants in partnership with record breakers on the land, sea and air. In 1909 when Charles ‘Cheers’ Wakefield founded Castrol, engine oil served a simple purpose - it just had to keep an engine going. Engine oils were simple mineral oils with few additives - not like the advanced oils of today such as Castrol EDGE.
Adapting to changing demands
These early, uncomplicated oils were nowhere near as versatile as today’s products. Oil manufacturers needed only to make sure there was an acceptable amount of engine wear, and that the engine met a certain standard of cleanliness. “There was an acceptance that you would need your car worked on regularly by a mechanic,” explains Will Pickford , BP Global Fuels & Lubricants Technology Motorsport Manager. “It wasn’t designed to run for long periods without maintenance, or to last a lifetime.” Engines needed to be taken apart and cleaned regularly to keep them in peak condition. Oils then would only work across a limited temperature range, so cars came with either a summer or winter oil, and these had to be changed regularly by a mechanic.
However, with the help of high-tech modern lubricants such as Castrol EDGE, modern engines last for many years, summer or winter, even though they are far more complex and have unimaginably greater stresses and loads placed on them. Now, it is possible to put oil in your car and drive for 30,000 km without changing it, because Castrol EDGE both works across a far broader temperature range, and also has Fluid Strength Technology™ to help provide maximum performance all year round.
Engineered with Fluid Strength Technology
The rise in engine power
There is a reason engines have become more complicated. Engines in the early 1900s were much less efficient than today’s units, for example the 1909 Model T Ford came with a 2.9-litre four-cylinder engine that produced just 20bhp. Now it is easy to get a much smaller capacity engine to produce far more performance. Today, you can get more than 120bhp from a turbocharged three-cylinder 1.0-litre engine – over six times the power yet just a third of the capacity. However, as the specific output has increased over time, much more stress has been put on engines, making an oil’s job that much tougher.
That’s why modern oils must pass a formidable range of tests and rigorous processes – to satisfy industry requirements, the demands of different car manufacturers and for Castrol, proprietary tests to ensure performance above and beyond.
Surpassing industry standards
These modern industry tests are unbelievably tough. Different manufacturers have different demands for each of their engines, with specific targets around servicing, fuel economy and emissions. “The important thing about Castrol EDGE is that it doesn’t just meet the standards,” says Will, “it goes beyond them and gives you additional benefits that standard oils won’t.”
Back in the 1930s, there weren’t the same testing requirements that exist today, but Charles Wakefield understood that performance could be unlocked by improving lubricants. In the absence of extreme tests of strength and protection, Charles recognised that motorsport was the ideal proving ground to test and improve his products.
Record breakers and pioneers
So in order to push its lubricants to the limit, Castrol also sought out record-breakers – pioneering engineers who were setting new benchmarks for distances and speed reached on land, water and air - to test its products. Working with them, Castrol used their experience, expertise and feats of speed and endurance to test and improve the strength of its products.
High performance has been at the core of Castrol’s development philosophy for the last 100 years. So it’s no surprise that it has helped set 21 land-speed records, power major overall Le Mans wins and score countless victories in the World Rally Championship.
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