A range of market developments is expected to have an impact on the volume of consumer automotive lubricants consumed in the United States. Among factors expected to curb demand are
changing oil drain intervals and maintenance recommendations from original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), including Honda, Toyota, General Motors, and Ford.
Despite efforts of the market to do whatever it can to convince vehicle owners to maintain shorter drain intervals, it is nearly a foregone conclusion that extended oil drain intervals are a reality. An example of the influence OEMs hold is indicated by the March, 2010 public statement made by Ford. Ford claims that the drain interval of every three months or 3,000 miles, recommended by most service technicians and quick lube shops, is an “automotive maintenance myth” which places an unnecessary burden on both consumers’ maintenance expenses and the environment. Moreover, Ford raised its oil drain interval on its 2007 model year (MY) vehicles by 50% to 7,500 miles followed by the introduction of its proprietary Intelligent Oil-Life Monitor (IOLM) system which is expected to be installed in 90% of its 2011 MY vehicles and extend drain intervals up to 1 year or 10,000 miles from the previous oil change.
As a result, players in the consumer automotive supply chain will need to adapt and adjust to this changing market dynamic and develop effective strategies to ensure consumers stay loyal to a particular brand, retailer, or installed service provider.