Navigating the Future: The North America Lubricants Market Outlook

The North America lubricants market offers diverse opportunities across all markets, sectors, and product categories if marketers look closely. The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) creates opportunities in several decarbonization pathways. The transition to electric mobility, the emergence and growth of low carbon fuels, and the increased use of high-quality lubricants will continue to influence demand growth. These and other developments generate significant growth opportunities for stakeholders throughout the value chain.

Watch the webinar, which draws upon key insights from our Opportunities in Lubricants: North America Market Analysis report, to discover:

  • The lubricant market scenario in the United States, Canada, and Mexico for 2022
  • Key trends from various sectors in the United States: Viscosity grade shifts, API service category shifts, and formulation shifts
  • Factors propelling lubricant demand and shaping the path for growth


David Tsui

Project Manager, Energy Practice

Sabrina Craciun

Senior Business Development Manager

PCMO Growth in Mainland China thumbnail

Unlocking the Next Frontier of PCMO Growth in Mainland China, from Cities to City Clusters

Unlocking the Next Frontier of PCMO Growth in Mainland China, from Cities to City Clusters

Base Year: 2022/23
Publication Schedule: Foundation Study by Q3 2023 and Quarterly Updates Thereafter
Regional Coverage: China

A comprehensive analysis examining the rapidly changing passenger car servicing market in China with insights provided at a city level, covering the leading 300+ cities. The study will track franchised workshop channel at the city level, covering vehicle sales and parc evolution, OEM activity, and lubricant consumption and identifying the most attractive city/city clusters.


  • Mapping of the franchised workshop channel (FWS) at city/city cluster level
    • - Tracking vehicle sales and parc evolution at city level
    • - Tracking OEM activity at city level
    • - Tracking lubricant blender activity at city level
    • - Tracking PCMO consumption trends by quality level, viscosity grade, and formulation type, as well as by branding
  • Geographic trends covering demand evolution, OEM performance, blender performance, and successful geographic expansion strategies
  • Sustainability-focused initiatives by OEMs, lubricant blenders, and marketers
  • - FWS channel attractiveness at city/city cluster level
  • - Identifying criteria to evaluate attractiveness
  • - Identifying attractive city/city clusters

Provides insights for 300+ cities in China

Table of Contents


Executive Summary

An overview of the key learnings

Passenger car parc dynamics

  • City-level passenger car population trends
  • New passenger car sales
  • Segmentation by powertrain
  • Segmentation by OEM

OEM dynamics

  • Distribution of OEMs by city and by heritage (Japanese, South Korean, European, American, Local, Other)
  • OEM programs and evolution covering genuine oils, partnerships with Oil Cos, use of digital technology, and retention rates
  • Outlook

Sustainability-focused activities

  • OEM and blender sustainability programs and impact on passenger car servicing

Lubricant consumption

Overall PCMO consumption trends covering:

  • By quality level, viscosity grade, and formulation at country level
  • By branding type (OEM-branded, merchant-branded, co-branded) at country level
  • Overall PCMO consumption by city
  • City-level PCMO consumption by quality level, viscosity grade, and formulation—only for the franchised workshop channel

Geographic trends

Geographic market analysis:

  • Current demand and growth by city and region
  • OEM trends and market share by city and region
  • Blender trends and market share by city and region; apparent strategies and future intent of leading blenders
  • Market outlook by geography

Market evaluation

  • Identify criteria that increase or decrease attractiveness of city/city cluster level markets
  • Identify attractive cities/city clusters
  • Profile select geographic expansion strategies
FAW Toyota Beijing Hyundai​​​ Dongfeng Nissan​​​ GAC Toyota
Chang’an Ford​​ SAIC VW​​​ BYD​​​ SAIC GM​​​
GAC Honda​​​ Greatwall Motor BMW​​​ Benz​​​
FAW VW​​ Chery​​​ Geely​​​ JAC

Report Benefits

This report serves as an excellent resource for understanding FWS and IWS channel growth, geographic trends, dealers OEM, blender, and customer behavior and profile. The quarterly monitor will help subscribers to:

  • Understand geographic trends covering major cities, and identify new opportunities and business challenges
  • Understand key product usage patterns and OEM programs, and identify differences between different regions and cities
  • Evaluate the market position of leading OEMs and blenders, and identify key success factors

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The Great Potential of the Wind Power Industry

Continuous industry growth, driven by clean energy and decarbonization targets, creates up-and-coming space for development for stakeholders operating on the renewable energy sources market. However, there are various manufacturing, supply chain, and installation bottlenecks yet to be addressed. This webinar, based on our Global Lubricants for Wind Turbines report, will help you identify opportunities and challenges in this industry to take your business to the next level.

Presented by Hareesh Nalam, Project Manager of our Energy sector, the webinar also offers:
- A look into lubricants demand, including synthetic products, and how key suppliers cater to the market
- Global coverage for onshore and offshore markets, as well as emerging wind energy technologies and their impact on lubricant demand
- An analysis of the power scenario and regulations


Hareesh Nalam

Project Manager,

Sabrina Craciun

Senior Business Development Manager

Immersion Cooling Fluids in Digital Infrastructure Fundamentals of the Growth Segment

Immersion Cooling Fluids in Digital Infrastructure: Fundamentals of the Growth Segment

Immersion Cooling Fluids in Digital Infrastructure: Fundamentals of the Growth Segment

Base Year: 2022
Published: January 2023
Coverage: Global

What's New?

It is not often traditional products face the prospect of a new outlet well-aligned with a mega-trend like Digitalization , creating a promising new playing field.
Correctly estimating the opportunity based on where-to-play and right-to-win requires several steps, starting with a pragmatic view of the fundamentals of the opportunity to make go/no-go decisions.
This is the purpose of our Flash Report on Immersion cooling fluids in Digital infrastructure.

What's it About?

Global electronic cooling technology is driven by new performance requirements.
As society’s data processing needs grow with the rise of the data economy, there is a need for higher-performance, smarter, more energy/cost-efficient, and sustainable data centers. Immersion cooling can help solve these challenges.
This report is focused on digital applications. It expands and complements our existing body of work on EV cooling evolution and will be a part of our Emerging Opportunity tracking program.

Why Look into this Space?

Immersion cooling technology offers superior performance compared with other technologies, pointing to value potential.
Fluid manufacturers developing products for emerging EV thermal management applications could uncover synergies in the emerging data server (cloud computing, cryptocurrency) applications.
Taking advantage of this growing space will require a sector-specific and compelling value proposition balancing the key needs: Performance, Cost, Sustainability.


Immersion Cooling Technology Overview: Technology Landscape

  • What is the technology?
  • What does it entail?
  • What are its advantages and drawbacks compared to other routes of thermal management?

Immersion Cooling Fluid Market Landscape: Inter-product Competition Lens

  • What are the various immersion cooling fluids being offered?
  • How do they vary in terms of chemistry; thermal and electrical properties; fluid life and maintenance practices; sustainability (carbon footprint and recycling potential); and fluid cost?
  • Who are the key suppliers of these fluids? What are the fluids that they offer?

Thermal Management in Digital Infrastructure: Customer Needs Lens

  • What are the key customer segments?
  • What are the current thermal management practices in various digital infrastructure segments – cloud computing, cryptocurrency mining, and other applications?
  • What are the performance requirements from the thermal management process in terms of heat removal / reuse, thermal fluid life, recycling, sustainability, and operating costs?
  • How do immersion cooling fluids compare with other thermal management technologies vis-à-vis the key customer needs?
  • What are commercial considerations when choosing cooling fluids?

Market Drivers and Outlook: Parameters of the Opportunity

  • What is the overall thermal fluid demand in volume and value terms? What is the share of immersion cooling fluids?
  • Geographic demand heatmap & customer footprint (key regions)
    5- and 10-year outlook for immersion coolants; key drivers and restraints for growth in immersion cooling technology
  • Key developments/activity, regulatory updates in the market impacting the demand for these fluids
  • Kline view: key take-aways on market assessment and opportunities

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Impact of EV Manufacturing on Metalworking Fluids: Opportunities and Challenges

Impact of EV Manufacturing on Metalworking Fluids: Opportunities and Challenges

Base Year: 2023
To be Published: Q4 2023
Regional Coverage: Global

Electric vehicles (EVs), a disruptive technology, will undoubtedly have a negative impact on the automotive lubricants market. They will also affect metalworking fluids (MWFs) due to a reduction in the number of components and changes in manufacturing processes compared to internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles.
This report aims at examining how the use of MWFs in automotive (cars and two-wheelers) manufacturing is changing with the growing production of EVs.


  • Size and segmentation for global MWFs demand by major fluid type and end-use industry
  • Size and segmentation for MWFs employed in automotive (car and two-wheelers) manufacturing by major fluid type
  • Identification of MWF-intensive auto-component manufacturing
  • Identification of metalworking processes affected by EV manufacturing
  • Future market for MWFs used in automotive (car and two-wheelers) manufacturing
  • Opportunities and challenges for MWF formulators and marketers

Comparison Between EV and ICE Vehicle Architecture

Table of Contents


EV Manufacturing

  • Market developments and regulations that are driving the production of EVs
  • Analysis of EVs (cars and two-wheelers) manufacturing in terms of changes in hardware size and metal alloys used
  • Identification of manufacturing processes and auto-components affected (eliminated/substituted/added) by EV manufacturing for cars and two-wheelers
  • Description of supply chains at a regional level for key auto-parts impacted by the e-mobility trend
    • - Engine/Engine parts
    • - ICE transmission system/parts
    • - EV electric motors
    • - EV transmission system/parts
    • - EV battery and housing

Impact of EVs on MWF

  • Definition and description of MWF and its types
  • Overall global MWF market size in 2022 by:
    • - Major regions
    • - Fluid type (removal, forming, protecting, and treating fluids)
    • - End-use industries
  • Global MWF demand in automotive (car and two-wheeler) manufacturing in 2022
    • - Demand by region
    • - Demand by vehicle type
    • - Demand by fluid type (removal, forming, protecting, and treating fluids)
  • Forecast global MWF demand in automotive (car and two-wheeler) manufacturing in 2027
    • - Impact on four major fluid types (removal, forming, protecting, and treating fluids) due to change in the vehicle architecture
    • - Impact at a regional level for regions manufacturing engine/engine parts, ICE transmission system, EV electric motor, EV transmission system/parts, and EV battery and housing
  • Opportunities and challenges by MWF type (removal, forming, protecting and treating fluids)

NOTE: EVs in this report include only battery electric, hybrid electric, plug-in hybrid, and fuel-cell cars, along with electric two-wheelers.

Report Benefits

This report serves as an excellent resource for manufacturers and formulators of MWFs in understanding how the growing production of EVs will affect the MWFs market. Specifically, this report assists subscribers by providing:

  • A snapshot of the global MWFs market by major fluid type
  • An assessment of EV manufacturing and its impact on MWFs in terms of major processes and auto-parts
  • A summary of opportunities that might emerge due to the unique component manufacturing requirements of EVs

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Major Trends in Lubricants How the Landscape is Shifting In Favor

Major Trends in Lubricants: How the Landscape is Shifting In Favor of ILMAs

This year's ILMA Engage event saw industry experts gather in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to share insights on the lubricants industry's biggest trends. Among them: George Morvey, Industry Manager of Kline's Energy sector, who took the stage to discuss "How the Landscape is Shifting in Favor of ILMAs.


EVs and personal mobility

What’s Next in Personal Mobility


With 2021 in the rearview mirror, Kline is identifying which trends will impact the new year, bringing heretofore unseen changes and curveballs.Among the most significant: the end of the ICE (internal combustion engine) age for personal mobility in most parts of the world, triggered by the increasing popularity of EVs (electric vehicles) as consumers demand cleaner, greener options in their now-substantial interest in sustainability.  But with progress comes challenges: a rapid expansion of charging infrastructure is essential, and oil companies now face several threats, including the inevitable contraction in their fuel and lubricants businesses.

So what, exactly, will comprise the charging infrastructure? And how will oil companies respond to their new dilemmas? Kline answers those questions in What’s Next in Personal Mobility: A Look Into 2022 and Beyond, in addition to providing an overview of digital technology — and more.


Opportunities in Lubricants: Indonesia Market Analysis

Opportunities in Lubricants: Indonesia Market Analysis​

Opportunities in Lubricants: Indonesia Market Analysis

Base Year: 2021
Forecast to 2026
Published: Q3 2022
Regional Coverage: Indonesia

A comprehensive analysis of the finished lubricants market in Indonesia in the post-COVID-19 world, this report will provide an in-depth analysis of all key market segments with a special focus on different product categories, channels of distribution, and major suppliers.


  • Lubricants demand in automotive and industrial segments by product type
  • Profiles of prominent installed and retail channels, on-highway and off-highway channels, and end-use industries
  • Lubricants demand growth drivers, challenges, quality changes, and market outlook over a five-year horizon
  • Profiles of top five lubricants marketers and an analysis of their market positions
  • Outlook for electric vehicles and their impact on finished lubricants demand
  • Market opportunities and challenges


Table of Contents


  • Political and economic background
  • Vehicle population, production, and sales trend by vehicle type

Commercial Automotive Lubricants

  • Applications and performance specifications of major products such as engine oil, gear oil, hydraulic and transmission fluid (HTF), and grease
  • Break-up of overall segment demand by the major products mentioned above
  • Break-up of engine oil demand by viscosity grade and API service category
  • Break-up of gear oil demand by viscosity grade
  • Break-up of HTF demand by product type
  • Synthetics: A break-up of major products’ demand by mineral vs. full synthetic vs semi-synthetic
  • Major suppliers: Brief information about leading suppliers including their sales
  • Channels of distribution: Segment demand break-up by channels of distribution
    • Short profile of each channel including definitions, vehicle types, promotional activities, packaging and maintenance, and purchasing practices
  • Market developments including drivers and restraints
  • Five-year demand forecast by major products
    • Engine oil: By viscosity grade
    • Gear oil: By viscosity grade
    • HTF: By fluid type
    • Grease

Consumer Automotive Lubricants

  • Applications and performance specifications of major products such as passenger car motor oil (PCMO), motorcycle oil (MCO), gear oil, automatic transmission fluid (ATF) and grease
  • Break-up of overall segment demand by the major products mentioned above
  • Break-up of PCMO demand by viscosity grades and API service categories
  • Break-up of two-wheeler engine oil demand by viscosity grades and API service categories
  • Break-up of gear oil demand by viscosity grade
  • Synthetics: A break-up of major products by mineral vs. full synthetic vs semisynthetic
  • Major suppliers: Brief information about leading suppliers including their sales
  • Channels of distribution: Segment demand break-up by channels of distribution
  • Short profile of each channel including definitions, customer type, promotional activities, packaging and maintenance, and purchasing practices
  • Market developments including drivers and restraints
  • Five-year demand forecast by the following products:
    • PCMO: By viscosity grade
    • MCO: By viscosity grade
    • Gear oil: By viscosity grade
    • ATF
    • Grease

Industrial Lubricants

  • Applications and performance specifications of major product categories including general industrial oils (GIO), metalworking fluids (MWFs), industrial engine oils (IEO), process oils and grease
  • Break-up of segment demand by the major products categories mentioned above
  • Break-up of GIO demand by fluid type:
    • Hydraulic fluid
    • Gear oil
    • Turbine and circulating oil
    • Compressor and refrigeration oil
    • Others
  • Break-up of MWF demand by fluid type such as removal fluid, forming fluid, protecting fluid, and treating fluid
  • Break-up of process oil demand by rubber process oil, white oil, electrical oil, and others
  • Break-up of IEO demand by marine, aviation, railroad, and other engine oils
  • Synthetics: A break-up of major product categories (excluding process oils) by mineral vs. full synthetic vs semisynthetic
  • Major suppliers: Brief information about leading suppliers, including their sales
  • End-use industries: Segment demand break-up by major end-use industries:
    • Short profile of each end-use industry including industry overview, and lubricant consumption, purchasing and maintenance practices
  • Five-year demand forecast by major product categories and sub-product types within each category


  • Overall five-year demand forecast
  • Overall market by major suppliers
  • Opportunities and challenges:
    • Commercial automotive
    • Consumer automotive
    • Industrial

Profiles of Top Five Suppliers

  • Company background
  • Organizational structure
  • Recent financial performance
  • Recent lubricants, basestocks, and additives-related activities
  • Basestock manufacturing
  • Finished lubricants business
    • Blending operations
    • Lubricant sales volume by market segment (consumer automotive, commercial automotive, and industrial)
    • Lubricant pricing
    • Distribution and marketing
    • Major brands
  • Appraisal

Report Benefits

This report serves as an excellent resource for lubricants marketers and manufacturers to
gain insights into the key lubricant market segments in Indonesia. It will assist subscribers

  • Assessing the current size of the finished lubricants market by major segments and product categories
  • Developing business strategies by understanding the trends and developments that are driving Indonesia’s lubricants market
  • Identifying opportunities for growth while recognizing barriers to growth and developing strategies to overcome them

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chips shortage

When the (Micro) Chips Are Down, Being Overly Smart Doesn’t Help

If there were an award for strongest trending topics in 2021, semiconductors would be among the top contenders.

Rightly so, considering their use in so many applications, such as automobiles, wireless communications, personal computers, servers, and electromedical and various other digital technologies. As the “smartness” quotient in end-use applications continues to climb, chip demand similarly continues to experience robust growth. The COVID-19 pandemic served to further bolster this momentum, as remote operations of manufacturing and service sectors placed even greater demands on connectivity and digital hardware — to the point where manufacturers began stockpiling chips for the integrated circuits (ICs). In contrast, the just-in-time (JIT) modelled supply chains of the automotive sector froze the procurement of chips during the initial lockdown phases of the pandemic.

As the automotive sector began recovering in the second half of 2020, the industry was forced to compete with other growing end users of semi-conductors, the supplies of which were impacted due to the pandemic-fueled factory shutdowns in countries like Malaysia. Even after chip manufacturing operations resumed in Q4 2020, supplies failed to keep up with the burgeoning demand — despite the maximization of utilization rates of global manufacturing assets. Unfortunately, industry pundits do not expect the situation to be resolved anytime soon.

Automotive Electronification

Over the last two decades, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have been working relentlessly toward transforming their automobiles from primarily mechanical machines to electronic devices. Integration of electronics in the vehicle hardware, like the drivetrain, controllers, infotainment, ACES (autonomous, connected, electric, and shared) mobility, and safety systems — for expanding the vehicle functionality and optimizing performance and safety, while complying with emission norms — necessitated the increased use of semiconductor chips. This trend is apparent from the growing content of semiconductor chips in automotive electronics over the last five years.


Total automotive semiconductor market

SOURCE: IC Insights
IC: integrated circuits; OSD: optical, sensors and discrete.

Further, growing penetration of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and hybrids — which incorporate a greater number of integrated circuits and sensors and, consequently, higher semiconductor content — will further amplify the stress on the chip supply chains.



semiconductor by powertrain

SOURCE: Infineon.
Other include semiconductor content in body, chassis, safety and infotainment, opto, small-signal discretes, and memory

Despite the strong recovery in demand, automotive production has been severely impacted by the unavailability of chips, with many global and regional OEMs — like Toyota, Honda, Ford, GM, Tata, and Nio — announcing production cuts or complete shutdowns of select assembly plants. LMC Automotive forecasts a decline of 8% in light vehicle sales in 2021. Further, due to the expected longer recovery path, light vehicle sales for 2022 and 2023 have also been revised downward, by 8% and 3%, respectively. These developments will have a profound impact on the entire automotive value chain. According to AlixPartners, a consulting firm, the semiconductor chip shortage will lead to a loss of USD 210 billion for the global automotive industry in 2021.



Impact on the Lubricant Industry

Looking forward, the lubricant industry will not be immune to changes in the automotive industry; both automotive and industrial lubricants will be adversely affected. This will have strong implications for the lubricant suppliers, against the backdrop of changes in customer ambitions, preferences, and buying considerations.

On the B2B front, the volumetric impact on factory fill volumes for engine oil, transmission fluids, grease, coolants, and other lubricants will be immediate and certain due to its direct correlation with automobile production. In addition, the demand for factory maintenance fluids and metalworking fluids (MWFs) in assembly plants and auto-component manufacturing facilities will be gradual and uneven — depending on the structure, operations and maintenance, and supply chains of OEMs and auto-component manufacturers.

Typically, the production line is comprised of a complex integration of many rotating pieces of equipment and machines, ranging from CNC machine tools to hydraulic and geared motor systems to compressors to robotics. Based on the operation, manufacturers use a combination of central lubrication reservoirs and isolated sumps for lubricating equipment. Low utilization or partial shutdown of the plant does not directly translate into a clear, measured decline in demand for factory maintenance fluids or MWFs. In the case of the latter, calculations for modelling the impact are more complex due to defined shelf life, which is governed by biological activity and individual company practices/processes for producing machined parts. Among MWFs, the impact on straight oils and premium water-miscible removal and forming fluids will be relatively easily to decipher due to higher application-specific end-use and independent reservoirs. The impact on conventional MWFs might vary depending on the auto-component supply chains and sourcing models of the OEMs. Preventive and treating fluids will be impacted to the extent of their exposure in the metal auto-components industry and mandates issued by automotive OEMs to the component suppliers for fluid use.

Trends in the automotive industry will have a cascading impact on the upstream raw material industries, like metals, rubber, and plastics, where the demand for general industrial oils and process oils will be affected. Further, the slowdown in the processing industries will have a direct impact on the extraction industries, like mining, refining, and petrochemicals, where the lower utilization rates will affect the consumption of the various lubricants used in both stationary and mobile rotating equipment.

On the B2C front, the implications will be broader. The longer wait times, along with rising input costs, including fuel, will have repercussions on the market for new automobiles and the aftermarkets. All these factors will play on the customer’s mind, resulting in contraction of the pool of new buyers, or buyers being forced to compromise on their original purchase aspirations, i.e., selecting either a pre-owned vehicle, or a low-tiered model of the OEM, or choosing a different OEM in the same vehicle category. These changes will all impact the demand for automotive lubricants — volumetrically and qualitatively. Sales of light-viscosity premium engine oils like 0Ws and 5Ws will be impacted as customers opt for heavier and economical grades of engine oils, while maximizing the life of their new vehicles or newly acquired used ones. Similarly, the use of premium greases utilized in fill-for-life components and in transmission fluids will be affected.

Channel volumetric flows will also not be immune to these changes. OEM dealerships will suffer losses in their service business or will experience a dispersion of the in-warranty vehicle footfalls as customers shift their OEM preferences for purchase of new vehicles, depending on the waiting period. The used-car market is also experiencing structural shifts in many regions, with the rapid expansion of the organized business, along with the ratio of new-vehicle sales versus preowned vehicles increasingly skewing toward the latter. The IWS channel will clearly benefit from the growth in average life of the vehicles due to this short-term trend. Further, as the business models of used-vehicle providers mature, they will expand their value-added services, including vehicle maintenance and services to customers, which will emerge as an important channel for lubricant sales.

The table that follows provides a simplified view of the impact the semiconductor shortage will have on lubricant consumption in various end-use sectors, along with the type of lubricants impacted. The scale and length of impact for lubricants will vary depending on the structure and profile of the customers that comprise the end-use sector, the operational and sourcing practices, and, ultimately, the business exposure to the automotive value chain.



Through ongoing research, Kline’s Energy team continues to expand its understanding of the interplay between various end-use sectors and applications of lubricants for simulating the real-time impact of these industry developments on the lubricants industry and adjacencies in the short, medium, and long terms. We are continuing to track various developments linked to the evolution of the ecosystems, specific customer needs, technology advancements, digitalization, and sustainability for defining the existing and new opportunities, in order to support the growth ambitions of our industry and clients.

About this article:

When the Chips are Down, Being Overly Smart Doesn’t Help features insights from Satyan Gupta, a director in Kline & Company’s Energy sector. Gupta, who is based in the firm’s Delhi office, has more than 13 years of management consulting experience in areas such as new market entry and feasibility, channel and customer acquisition strategy, market-opportunity mapping, and price and sustainability analysis. Prior to joining Kline, Gupta worked in the Natural Gas industry as a technical-commercial consultant.

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