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oil API ratings


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Can someone explain the API ratings to me?

(SM, SL, SJ, CF) And what is the order of their rating from highest to lowest..

My manual calls for SL or higher but that means nothing to me...Thanks...

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Be aware that oil from the latest service category, SM, may not be a superior choice for motorcycle applications than an earlier version, like SG. Improving gas mileage and reducing emissions has been a high priority, and has resulted in chemistry changes that may affect clutch performance. What bike are you concerned with? If it's your BMW, with a dry clutch, it's not a worry.

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Hi Bill,


Heard Torrey was a blast!! Next time for me.


Check out these two addresses:

www.ibmwr.org/otech/oilreport.html - older article entitled" Is This The Right Oil For My Bike" by Jeffery Dicarlo: I found it on the "BMW Riders" website. Easy reading for a non-tech person like myself and pretty informative.


www.amsoil.com/lit/g2156pdf.pdf - Recently published (March'06?) (somewhat self-serving) article sponsored by Amsoil Inc. entitled "A Study of Motorcycle Oils". Chock full of very specific comparisons of oils you know at different viscosity levels and referencing chemical content. Sounds worse then it is; clear, easy-to-read charts/graphs.


Hope that helps.



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