Why is the Shell Lubricant in Tesco so much cheaper?

You have probably seen this for yourself, but why is the fully synthetic Shell Helix Ultra 5W-40 selling for just RM99 for a 4L can when the retail price in the spare parts shop and Shell fuel stations is about RM260.00.

The difference in price of RM161 is strange and sounds like someone is getting played out. Or not!

Choosing the right engine oil for your car is a daunting task with so many options on sale. What’s more, your mechanic’s recommendations always seem to be the best.

However, you must note that your mechanic will often propose the lubricant which he gets the best margin of profit from.

It is obvious that the Shell Helix Ultra 5W-40 is an imported lubricant – the can says “Made In Italy”-and carries all the global standards approvals. So why is it much, much, much cheaper?

Well, our research with the industry reveals this – Tesco as a large supermarket chain buys this lubricant in bulk and ships it into Malaysia and so they are able to sell at a very low margin.

Also, this Italian product Shell Helix Ultra 5W-40 contains some chemical properties that is suitable for European weather and for more modern engines like the latest direct injection engines. This means, all reconditioned used European cars should have no issue using this product.

The Shell Helix Ultra 5W-40 produced in Malaysia at RM260 is formulated to work with cars sold here and our humidity included.

Experts suggest if we are using an older vehicle then we are NOT good to go with the RM99 Tesco Shell. Something modern, say a 2013 onwards vehicle, is also best with the RM260 lube.

While there is a mountain of information to learn about the various lubricant choices and you can always ask the advice of a trusted mechanic (we also are in the dark about which is best as we trust our mechanic’s choice), the first step is honestly quite simple: Look in the car manual and it will give the factory recommendation for lubricant.

This article is powered by DS&F, visit www.dsf.my for more automotive updates.

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