ACEA C3-10


ACEA C3 oils are Top Tier lower SAPS1 lubricants. They are designed for use in high performance gasoline and light duty diesel engines where advanced aftertreatment systems such as Diesel Particulate Filters (DPFs) and Three Way Catalysts (TWC) are used.

ACEA C3 oils are typically SAE 5W-30 or SAE 5W-40 based on API Group III base oils. The main physical and chemical requirements for ACEA C3 are shown below:

Requirement Method Unit Limit
HTHS viscosity CEC L-36-A-90 cP ≥ 3.5
Sulphated Ash ASTM D874 %wt ≤ 0.8
Phosphorus ASTM D5185 %wt ≥ 0.070 and ≤ 0.090
Sulphur ASTM D5185 %wt ≤ 0.3
Evaporation loss (NOACK) CEC L-40-A-93 % ≤ 13
Total Base Number ASTM D2896 mgKOH/g ≥ 6

Note 1 : SAPS refers to Sulphated Ash, Phosphorus and Sulphur, the levels of which are often restricted in the latest performance specifications.


ACEA C3 was first introduced into the ACEA Oil Sequences in 2004 and was updated in the 2007 issue of the Sequences by raising the diesel piston cleanliness requirement in the Volkswagen TDI engine test from ≥ RL206 - 3 points to ≥ RL206.

For ACEA 2010 a number of additional changes to the requirements for ACEA C3 have been made. These include the inclusion of the new OM646LA engine test, as a replacement for the OM602A, along with an increase in sludge handling.

The inclusion of the new OM646LA engine test raises the diesel wear protection performance demanded from ACEA C3 oils.

The changes for ACEA 2010 are summarised below:

Test Change for ACEA 2010
OM602A Removed.
OM646LA New test added
M111SL Average engine sludge to requirement to increase from ≥ RL140 to ≥ RL140 +4 standard deviations
or ≥ 9.0%

Relative Performance

The relative performance diagrams presented below compare Lubrizol's interpretation of the performance of requirements of the existing ACEA 2007 C3-07 oil sequence with the ACEA 2010 version. As shown, ACEA 2010 C3-10 represents an upgrade in wear protection.

The relative performance diagrams represent an interpretation made by The Lubrizol Corporation ("Lubrizol") of various rules and specifications. They are not a literal translation of a performance specification and should not be used as a replacement for evaluating engine oil performance in accordance with the relevant vehicle manufacturer's requirements. They are presented to assist the reader in visualizing some of the parameters that need to be considered and balanced when formulating a lubricant. Lubrizol accepts no liability for any losses or damages incurred by the user as a result of them relying on the interpretation made by Lubrizol. Readers are advised to consult the specific rules for greater detail with regard to meeting the requirements as set forth in any specification.