More consumer awareness needed about using right petrol grade
Not many motorists know that using a higher-than-recommended octane grade will not improve engine performance.
A finding from a consumer survey by the Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS) of 1,200 motorists show that more than six in 10 motorists purchased a higher grade of petrol than recommended by the model for their vehicles.
CCS said in a report published yesterday: "While CCS recognises that there may be reasons why some drivers choose to pump a higher octane grade than recommended (e.g. to take advantage of the additives that are added in the premium petrol grade), there is also a prevailing view among motorists that using higher petrol grades leads to better engine performance."
When asked how they choose a petrol grade, only 11 per cent considered the option "specified/recommended grade by vehicle manufacturer".
But CCS cited five studies that have concluded that using a higher grade than necessary can actually reduce optimal engine performance
It said: "Greater awareness among consumers regarding octane grades and other technical aspects of petrol usage may help consumers make more informed purchase decisions."
It said motorists should consult the vehicle owner's manual for the correct gasoline grade.
Mr Julian Kho, editor at motoring website sgCarMart, said: "I cannot agree with the logic that better octane grade equals better performance."
He suggested that some consumers may mistakenly believe so since they are paying a higher price.
Still, some consumers may cling on to their preferences.
Mr Glenn Chua, 54, who drives a Kia, fills his tank with a combination of Shell's V-Power and octane 95 petrol from Esso.
He said: "V-power is the most powerful and expensive petrol. One type of petrol cannot maximise the power of the engine... I've got the ratio right through experience." - YUNITA ONG