Even from way back when I was a mechanic, some things have hardly changed. One of them is the Oil Change.
All we had to do was to take out the bolt in the cars oil sump and drain away the oil into a bucket or some other container. We would put the sump plug back in and refill the engine to the correct level using a dipstick.
This method has hardly changed over the past fifty years and more. It was also very easy to do. In fact this job was one of my first jobs to learn when I was an apprentice mechanic. The only problem that we encountered was if the sump plug had been fitted with a crossed thread during the last oil change.
This system has probably lasted us right up to today. There have been some slight changes. Some car manufacturers now fit protective sump guards underneath the cars to protect the underneath of the car’s engine from rocks and stones, but other than that everything has remained the same.
Then came Castrol who are about to revolutionise the way that we carry out an oil change on our car’s. The new method is called the “Nexcel” system. The new system is a sealed unit that contains the oil and the oil filter and slots into the car’s engine like a cartridge, in fact that’s what I would call it, a cartridge?
This system is expected to replace all the old fashioned methods that I have described earlier. It will be expected to do an oil change in just over a minute. This will be carried out under the bonnet (hood) and not under the car.
The most important part of the new system though, is the fact that the new system is controlled by electronics. These electronics will be connected and be a part of the car’s engine management system. Because of this Castrol say that the new oil change system will reduce the C02 emissions of the car and the old oil will be recycled in the correct way.
The first system to be used is fitted on an Aston Martin Vulcan supercar that has been built as a track car. Castrol say that the new system could be rolled out to other production car’s by 2020.
“We believe that the Aston Martin Vulcan sets a whole new standard in the ultra-high luxury supercar class, just as the Nexcel technology sets a whole new standard in engine lubrication. It therefore made perfect sense for us to bring these two innovations in engineering together, and showcase their capabilities,” said Dr Andy Palmer, Aston Martin CEO.
In my opinion car designers will have a problem fitting the system under an already crowded bonnet. I suppose it is no coincidence that the oil change box is about the same size as a car battery. So if the battery is removed to another part of the car. Then there will be room for the new oil change system to be fitted where the battery was fitted.
Like most of these ideas it may fall off into the background, only time will tell.