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What makes VW 507 oil so necessary?

58228 Views 195 Replies 33 Participants Last post by  jeffnhiscars
I can't help but to think, if our vehicles-3.0 TDI motors-are so special, so expensive and so exclusive, why do we need the magical VW 507 spec. oil? What is it in our motors that makes them so seemingly magical that they need this oil we can't just by at Vatozone, Advanced Auto, Walmart, etc. and have to pay about $10 a quart for?
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Could be the fact that they don't want to pay for the 507 00 cert? I know that's expensive.
Everything I've read on the subject seems to be along these lines -- there may be other motor oils that meet the 507 spec but they haven't been submitted to VW for certification. Likewise with the MB spec.

Since there aren't many VW diesels on the road in the US, there isn't much reason to spend the money to gain the certification except for the two biggies (Mobil and Castrol) who sell worldwide.

I can find the Motul stuff at a couple local auto parts stores, but it's under the counter in a glass case like it's some kind of top-shelf scotch or something. I think it's like $12/liter. Never bought it because the Castrol LL03 is so cheap at the dealer.
Maybe, but there is a LONG list of oils in the VW Technical Bulletin that VW says meets their 507 00 spec. All of them 5W-30.
But some of them don't list it on the bottle or anywhere on the website for US oils - in many cases you may have to go to an overseas website and data sheet to find the certification, which to me seems to indicate that the North America version may be different.

Motor oils generally aren't made in one place and then shipped all over the world - they're made from a supply that's closer to the production facility, and there are production facilities all over the world, so the same kind of oil made for sale in one location might be slightly different chemically than oil made somewhere else that was certified by VW, even if they're named the same. Pennzoil Platinum, for example, lists separate Euro and US data sheets. The base Platinum Euro version meets 502 and 505 spec, but the US does not list that spec.

In many cases the specific characteristics may be identical even if made in different factories (or at least equally compliant), but VW certified the oil from the production facility associated with just one market - e.g., the Euro market - and therefore the US version might be OK but wasn't tested or certified. Or it might not be compliant.

I don't think I'll take that chance - I'll just get the Castrol from the dealer.
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But some of them don't list it on the bottle or anywhere on the website for US oils - in many cases you may have to go to an overseas website and data sheet to find the certification, which to me seems to indicate that the North America version may be different.
Example - Datasheet for Castrol Edge 5w30 from Feb 2015, lists 507 spec:$File/BPXE-9TZR5R.pdf

Castrol Edge 5w30 U.S. data sheet from May 2016, does NOT list 507 spec:$File/BPXE-AA5D3W.pdf

Which one of these are you buying at your local auto store?
Well, now you're asking a different question. I was merely pointing out that VW says there is a long list of oils that meet their 507 00 spec. All of them 5W-30.

Your question seems to more "How do I know that a specific quart/liter of oil actually meets 507 00?" For me, I'd want to see the oil on VW's 507 00 list AND I'd want want to see "507 00" on the label of the container of oil.

BTW - At my last oil change at the VW dealer, they used oil with P/N G-052-195-1Q-DSP. I think this is Castrol Edge LL03 5W-30. On previous oil changes, the oil description was always something like "TDIOIL/CP 504/507 SPEC" or "TDIOIL 5W30 SYN LL03".
This is what they used. And it's what I buy from the dealer.

Just regular ol' Castrol Edge 5w30 Extended Performance ain't the right stuff....
You can get M1 ESP 5W-30 delivered for just over $9 a liter. Pretty decent deal and you don't have to drive anywhere.

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You can get a 55 gallon drum of Quaker State Ultimate Durability European L 5W30 delivered for $1580.

That's $7.18/quart! :cool:
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Does it say 507 00 on the label?
Yep! At least the stuff I get from the dealer does.


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Then what is important is not that you got it at a VW dealer, but rather that it says "507 00" on the label.
Yeah, I guess that's true, but I would expect my dealer to be providing and using the correct oil. Had they given me something that *didn't* say "507 00" on the label but said it meets the criteria, I think I would call VAG-USA and get that in writing if they told me the same thing.

If that couldn't be verified or they wouldn't provide that in writing, I'd probably never go back to that dealer again.
I still maintain that the only thing that makes 507 different is the low ash and sulfur content. If it wasn't for that, it would be very similar to other VW spec oils. Guess it doesn't really matter for this thread's sake though.

Bottom line for sure, is that 507 spec oil is the ONLY oil VW licenses for use with diesel engines equipped with a DPF.
There could be other additives like detergent and stabilizers....
Could be a lot of things. Does anybody know what things it is, if any?
Unicorn piss? It's probably unicorn piss....
Yes. Only a few select parts stores carry it; Pep Boys and Napa that I know of. Isn't really stocked anywhere else.

If you look at the proportion of diesels to gasoline cars in the U.S. vs U.K., I'm fairly certain U.K. has A LOT more diesels than we do.
SOME Pep Boys and NAPA stores...and some AutoZones, some O'Reillys....not all. Only my local Pep Boys and AutoZone stores (2 stores in a 20-mile radius) carry Mobil 1 ESP, and sometimes they're sold out.

Think of it this way - there are barely 600,000 VAG diesels in all of America, and of those, probably a small minority of owners change their own oil. 500,000+ of those are Jetta/Golf owners, and some of them probably go to Jiffy Lube and then wonder why their DPFs clog and engines fail way too soon. Many of the rest probably go to the dealer or a certified VW mechanic.

In other words, few are buying their own oil, so the demand isn't really here for a wide selection of VW - certified oils.
Unless someone in Wolfsburg who works on VW's Lubricant Engineering team happens to read & reply to this thread, we'll probably never know for sure!
Gives us something else to pointlessly discuss while we're waiting for something relevant over in the Dieselgate thread... :-/
2) 507 rated oil is ONLY for engines with PD (PumpDeuse) AND DPF.
To be clear, 507 00 oil is for common-rail engines AND PD with DPF. VW stopped using PD injectors in their engines in I think 2009 and onwards. You should ONLY use 507 00 in PD engines that have a DPF, but that's not the ONLY engine it should be used in.

For example, I have a 2010 T2 which uses a CR system and requires 507 00 spec.
Perhaps you should ask those last four brands why their 507.00 isn't readily available in the US?
I think that's an easy answer - because diesel VWs and Audis are actually quite rare here, as are diesel passenger cars in general, despite the big deal our government has made about Dieselgate. That, and most motor oil is produced and consumed regionally.

VW had Well under 1 million diesel vehicles sold across seven model years in a country with over 250 million vehicles on the road. Why bother with such a low on the road population?

You can actually find MB Bluetec spec oil on the shelves at most major auto parts stores, and they sold even fewer here than VAG did. I wonder why that is?
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I'd suggest they aren't the same - as in the UK we have available 5W-30 ACEA-C3 without VW 507.00 and often from the same brand, a 5W-30 ACEA-C3 with VW 507.00 approval.

I'd also suggest that the reason is that oil requirements are banded to get their rating - in a laboratory two oils might be 3W-27 and 7W-33 but both marketed as 5W-30 - the qualities required for ACEA ratings are equally banded - the VW 507.00 bands may be tighter than the API viscosity rating band or ACEA grade band.

You've probably seen the specification for ACEA C3-12, the latest specification, but VW 507.00 may be tighter than that.
Maybe, but the main difference is that only motor oils tested by VW's approved laboratories and granted the VW 507.00 seal of approval carry the 507.00 seal of approval. Others available in the US may meet the grade/spec, but they haven't been evaluated by VW's labs, so they don't carry the 507.00 stamp. Still others may not meet the spec.

So, the safest way to be sure in the US is just buy it from the dealer - it's not that much more expensive and for most people it's a lot easier. I suppose one could send samples of unused motor oil to a motor oil testing laboratory, pay for independent testing comparing a more commonly-found ACEA C3 spec oil to Castrol LL03, and then go from there, but that's a lot of time and money for a little bit of convenience.
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I'm lucky as Idparts is in MA-where I live, and with their $4.95 flat rate shipping, I get it delivered in a day or two.

I can only imagine, if I go with a RR Td6, what sort of special-oil I may need for their motor.
It's a Ford motor, and they're actually much less stringent - "SAE 5W-30 meeting Jaguar Land Rover engine oil specification STJLR.03.5005. If unavailable, SAE 5W-30 ACEA C2 engine oils may be used. Other specifications of engine oil are not approved for use in this vehicle."
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