Diesel Engine OEMs Announce New Specifications for API CK-4 and FA-4 Oils

by on October 31, 2016 26 Comments


The major diesel engine and truck manufacturers have recently provided their own OEM specifications that connect with the new API CK-4 and FA-4 categories for their new model GHG ’17 diesel engines. Additionally, a few of them have started providing initial guidance for backward compatibility of the new products for their older EPA model diesel engines. Finally, a few have stepped out to also announce support for longer oil drain intervals with their new upgraded OEM specification requirements.

Although a lot of the focus is on API CK-4 products in these announcements, it is clear that there will be greater acceptance of API FA-4 products into the future as more GHG 17 and newer model diesel engines are introduced and older ones are phased out of service. Furthermore, most OEMs are already starting to develop next generation engines and engine oils for launch between 2020 and 2025 – and almost all of the new oil development programs for these engines are focused on low HT/HS SAE 5W-xx viscosity grade use for factory fill to meet upcoming stricter fuel efficiency and emission standards.



API CK-4: Cummins CES 20086

API FA-4: Cummins CES 20087

Both API CK-4 and FA-4 are approved for new GHG ‘17 Cummins X-15 and X-12 (this engine model will not be commercial till 2018) engines. API CK-4 along with Cummins CES 20086 specification oils are also approved for use in older ISX and ISX 15 model engines; API FA-4 is not authorized for anything but X-15 model engines at this time.

With the new categories, Cummins also has announced a 10,000-mile increase in oil drain recommendations (from a maximum 40,000 to 50,000 miles) for new X-15 engines using the new oils.


Detroit Diesel

API CK-4: DFS 93K222

API FA-4: DFS 93K223

Owned by Daimler, Detroit Diesel has approved the backwards compatible API CK-4 for older engines in Freightliner and Western Star trucks. API FA-4 is approved for new GHG’17 model engines along with EPA 10 and EPA 13 older model diesel engines. The company has not announced an oil drain extension, but recommends using the new products in new engines. Detroit Diesel will start factory-filling new model engines with API FA-4 and DFS 93K223 approved oil starting mid-December 2016.


Volvo and Mack

API CK-4: Volvo VDS4.5

API CK-4: Mack EOS 4.5

API CK-4: Renault VI RLD 4

API FA-4: No specification and not allowed for use in EITHER new or older Volvo or Mack diesel engines

Volvo and Mack, both owned by Volvo, have new specifications for API CK-4 but do not allow use of API FA-4 oils in their engines. The Volvo and Mack specifications are built around tighter requirements for improved oil oxidation performance as measured by the new Volvo T13 engine test versus the typical API CK-4 or API FA-4 Volvo T13 requirements.

Volvo is announcing a 10,000-mile oil drain extension (45,000 to 55,000) for new engines using the new VDS4.5 or Mack EOS 4.5 oils.





Navistar does not have its own OEM specification qualification program; it simply uses the API designations. Most Navistar equipment carries Cummins engines, and the recommendations are the same as Cummins, including the oil drain extension. For its own N13 model diesel engine, API CK-4 is recommended for all model diesel engines. API FA-4 is approved for new model GHG ’17 engines only. Navistar will be factory-filling with API CK-4 SAE 10W-30 diesel engine oil.




API FA-4 (to be announced in future)

PACCAR uses the API designations for its specifications with no specific OEM specification qualification program included. Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks are installed with either a PACCAR MX or Cummins diesel engine. Both engine models will be factory filled with Delo 400 XLE Synblend SAE 10W-30 (API CK-4 ready) beginning mid-September 2016. API FA-4 oils may be used with new Cummins X-15 diesel engines in their trucks, however PACCAR has not commented yet on use of API FA-4 oils for the PACCAR MX GHG 17 or older model engines.

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About the Author ()

Leonard has worked over 25+ years in the Lubricants Business in sales, product line, training, and solutions focus with over 14+ years with Chevron Lubricants. He is Chevron’s Global Commercial Brand Manager overseeing the Delo Brand and product line strategy for Heavy Engine Oils, Coolants, Greases, and Automotive Gear Oils within Chevron’s family of lubricants brands. He has developed and led Chevron lubricants HDMO and Driveline strategy into low viscosity leadership with the launch of several key fuel efficient Chevron Delo branded products. He also is the Global Project Manager responsible for Chevron’s Delo PC-11 product launch into the North American, European, Africa & Middle East, and Asia Pacific Markets for the future. Leonard is a member of STLE and SMRP and holds several certifications including Certified Maintenance Reliability Professional (CMRP); Certified Lubrication Specialist (CLS); Oil Monitoring Analyst (OMA); Machinery Lubricant Technician (MLT); and Machinery Lubricant Analyst (MLA). He has also written over 35+ articles for various publications in relation to reliability, coolants, greases and heavy duty engine oils. Recent articles including “Breaking the Myths and Superstitions about Total Base Number”, “Coming Changes for Customers with PC-11” and a recent featured article in STLE Tribology & Lubrication Technology Magazine – “The Challenges of PC-11 – Q&A with Chevron Lubricants Leonard Badal”

Comments (26)

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  1. texas.dallas@gmail.com' Mir Ali says:

    What about Mercedes? Does this oil meets MB Approved 229.51 or 229.52?

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi Mir, our Delo 400 XSP SAE 5W-30 will meet the performance requirements of MB229.51. Thanks for submitting a question!

  2. thelazzyp@aol.com' Caleb Pillsbury says:

    Gentlemen: I have a 2005 Dodge w/a 5.9 24 valve Cummins with approx 250k miles on it. What would your recommendation be for using your newer formulated oils in my motor. I have always used Delo 15/40 with complete satisfaction, I am wondering if you might recommend otherwise. Thankyou so much: Caleb Pillsbury

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi Caleb, thanks for your question! The new Delo 400 products will work great for your Cummins engine. I would recommend you use any of these three options:

      Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40
      Delo 400 XLE SAE 15W-40
      Delo 400 XSP SAE 5W-40

    • longbow_apache64d@yahoo.com' Philip says:

      Amsoil makes a “SAE 15w-40 Heavy-Duty Diesel and Marine Oil” which has a 12 TBN. The higher the TBN usually equates to better protection and longer drain intervals. For you year of Cummins it should work fine. I use it on my modified 6.7 Cummins for about 3/4 of the year. I switch to the “Amsoil Premium 5w-40” during the colder winter months.

  3. jmbaxt@aol.com' John Baxter says:

    It’s amazing to me how relatively few engines are OK for the use of FA-4. I hope this will change as time goes by. It’s good news, however, that the OEMs are favorably impressed with both new oils and tend to approve the use of longer change intervals when the new oils are used.

  4. thelazzyp@aol.com' Caleb Pillsbury says:

    Thanks so much for your timely response. Of the three though, would one be the better to use on a ‘higher hours motor’ ? Thanks so much: Caleb

  5. gijackson@yahoo.com' Glenn Jackson says:

    My 2001 Excursion has the 7.3L powerstroke, with over 224,000 miles. Amongst the CK-4 oils what do you recommend? Also, would you ever recommend using FA-4 in that engine? Look forward to hearing from you. Thanks.

  6. LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

    Hi Glenn,
    Moving to the following products will work fine for your vehicle:

    1. Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40 (API CK-4)
    2. Delo 400 XLE SAE 15W-40 (Synblend – API CK-4)

    Do not use API FA-4 oils or any SAE 10W-30 oils in this engine.

  7. jd.haverty70@gmail.com' Jon Haverty says:

    Hi Mr. Badal,
    This is a very informative article about the new oil formulas that anyone running a diesel vehicle should know about.
    I wanted to correct a small typo in your article. The new 2017 and 2018 Cummins engines are the X15 and X12.

  8. Markraia@carolina.rr.com' MPR says:

    I have a 2016 ISX 15 what would be the best new formula for me?

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi MPR, thanks for your question! The below products would work great for your vehicle/engine:

      Delo 400 XLE SAE 15W-40/Delo 400 XLE SAE 10W-30
      Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40

  9. jhartman67@gmail.com' Jo says:

    Will I be able to use this on a 06 Caterpillar C15 highway engine?

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi Jo, you can use the following new Delo 400 products with your 06 Caterpillar C15 highway engine:

      1. Delo 400 XSP SAE 5W-40 – starting April 2017
      2. Delo 400 XLE SAE 15W-40 – available now
      3. Delo 400 SDE SAE 15W-40 – available now

      You can use these when you get to your next oil drain and changeover with no lubricant performance issues.

  10. rw_roach@hotmail.com' Willie C Roach says:

    Thanks for the level of professionalism in these articles!!! I have a 2006 5.9 24V Cummins with 126K miles
    I can’t wait to put this information to work – again, thanks for the professionalism…………….Willie.

  11. darrenfike68@yahoo.com' Darren Fike says:

    Hello, what are the recommended oil type and weights for new ford. Super duty f250 with 6.7 power stroke ? Your reply will be appreciated , thanks

  12. muscente@verizon.net' Patrick says:

    What is the alternative for the 5w-40 delo full synthetic?

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi Patrick, Our new product launching on April 1st, 2017 will be Delo 400 XSP SAE 5W-40 to replace Delo 400 LE Synthetic SAE 5W-40.

      If you prefer to use a Synblend product then our Delo 400 XLE SAE 15W-40 will work well in its place.

  13. dcerise@montana.com' Dave says:

    Will the CK-4 product will provide better protection in a sever load application than a FA-4 product? if so why.

    • LJBA@chevron.com' Leonard Badal says:

      Hi Dave, It depends on the type of load, operational conditions and age of the engine. For severe loads defined as high torque/slower speed or stop and go operating conditions, this would most likely be true since the thinner film from API FA-4 would not have the same load strength for this type of operating application. An SAE 15W-40 API CK-4 product would be the better recommendation for this type of application.

      However if the application is a heavy load but constant speed over the highway, then a correctly formulated API FA-4 oil should provide the same protection as API CK-4 oils.

  14. sm@hollpower.com' hbrowninvestigations.com says:

    As we move forward, end users will consider an HDD lubricant, that is good for both old and new diesel engines, to be the new definition of universal HDD engine oil.

  15. Shawn Whitacre says:

    Yes, absolutely! It helps to have a diverse product line that allows you to select the HD lubricant that meets the needs of your entire fleet. This includes picking the right viscosity grade, API and OEM spec coverage, as well as diesel and gasoline engine protection!

  16. johngaudio77@yahoo.com' john says:

    So I wanted to know has chevron made the delo available for gad engines . I have a 2017 ram 1500 with 5.7 hemi and it calls for 5w20 but 5w30 would be fine just curious if the new delo 5w30 xsp ck4/SN would work

    • Shawn Whitacre says:

      John, thanks for your question. Yes, the new Delo 400 XSP SAE 5W-30 meets API CK-4 and API SN and would be an excellent option for your 2017 Ram 1500.


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