Choosing an engine oil for race cars is an intense process, especially for endurance racing. With the car’s engine running as hard as it possibly car for hours upon hours upon hours at a time, constantly being brutalized, it needs an engine oil that can keep up. So it’s fair to say that reliability, longevity and performance even are some of the key requirements for motorsport racing.
Those requirements led to a partnership between BMW Motorsport and MOTUL. In January 2020, MOTUL became the Official Partner to BMW M Motorsport, providing technical co-operation, expertise and support to the successful BMW M Motorsport racing program in North America.
The partnership brings MOTUL working together with BMW Motorsport in Munich to develop a tailor-made lubricant for the BMW M8 GTE racing cars. “A partnership with BMW made perfect sense since we have worked with BMW to test and approve our 8100 consumer synthetics to meet BMW approval standards,” said MOTUL in a statement to BMWBLOG.
For each technical partnership MOTUL signs, they work with the team engineers to test and refine 300V under race conditions. But before the engine oil is introduced to racing competitions, the development phase kicks off with a bench dyno test. During the dyno tests, MOTUL monitors data such as horsepower and oil consumption.
MOTUL engineers are then looking at the sheer strength of their racing oil and whether they break down during thermal and mechanical stresses.
Furthermore, in the past, racing teams sent samples of the MOTUL 300V 0W40 used during races to an independent lab to see how a full day of racing has impacted the oil. The tests deliver a report on the health of both the oil and the engine. A high iron reading could indicate a premature wear of the crankshaft or cylinder liner. High aluminum numbers could bring up issues with the cylinder heads, for example, while copper has an impact on bearings. The oil’s viscosity is also being analyzed to ensure that the ideal viscosity range is maintained throughout the racing day.
For a first hand experience, MOTUL plans to bring their oil lab to this year’s Petit Le Mans, the 10-hour endurance race which takes place at Road Atlanta.
As you’d expect, the racing experience translates into the consumer market as well. MOTUL is the oil of choice for many car manufacturers and it’s a BMW-approved oil. Most of the brands recommend MOTUL’s 8100 series of fully synthetic engine oils.
BMW Motorsport’s partnership with MOTUL kicked off at the Rolex 24 in Daytona with a win for BMW. But the COVID-19 pandemic put a stop to live racing, so the duo pivoted to IMSA iRacing Pro Series Championship won by Bruno Spengler. The white #25 BMW M8 GTE race car was painted in MOTUL red for iRacing, but the live car was converted once racing returned.
Going over their list of MOTUL partnered racing events will reveal several highly respectable racing championships: European Le Mans Series, FIA World Endurance Championship, Super GT, Moto GP and Isle of Man TT.
Furthermore, BMW Motorsport and MOTUL partnered up on social media as well with the BMW drivers taking the fans behind the scenes during racing events. You can learn more about the MOTUL engine oil offerings here.