I had lunch the other day with an old friend of mine. He had been a radar observer in my jet fighter unit and went on to become a high school teacher, basketball coach and, ultimately, a high school principal. Now retired for several years, he lives in Las Vegas and only occasionally gets back to this area. He is an extremely genuine man.
We spoke, of course, about the “good old days.” He remembered with fondness the strictness with which I ran the unit and the dedication and camaraderie we all developed as a crew. He mentioned also that through the years he has heard only good things about AMSOIL. Everyone he speaks to, it seems, has nothing but good things to say about the company. My friend has followed our growth from the start and, as my friend, feels a personal sense of pride that AMSOIL has grown to the extent we have grown. Needless to say, it was wonderful to see him again.
Obviously, my friend was right. We have grown. We survived the difficult early years and fought through some major battles. We forged the market for synthetic motor oil, despite the long odds we faced. The major oil companies and vehicle manufacturers wanted nothing to do with synthetic oil, and they were slow to acknowledge that AMSOIL had developed a superior product. We fought through our court battles with Pennzoil and Amway and never lost sight of our goals. And we defended ourselves against the ridiculous falsehoods that people spread about synthetic oil.
The real secret to our success, however, is really no secret at all. It all comes down to our unwavering persistence, a strong belief in our products and the commitment to develop high quality products that people want to buy – products that would effectively penetrate markets.
Our XL oil line is a perfect example. Those products were developed to penetrate the installer market. People were moving toward do-it-for-me oil changes, and we had to gain a foothold. We also knew that the XL oils would appeal to many of those consumers who were not yet ready to jump to our 25,000-mile oils. The XL oils, we were convinced, would open new doors for our Dealers. We were right. With their reduced drain interval recommendation and lower upfront cost, the XL oils took off. Consumers were attracted to the AMSOIL brand, and they found value in the 7,500-mile drains. Installers found value, too, in the profits the XL oils generated. The XL oils have now become the oils of choice for many Dealers, Preferred Customers and installers. In fact, the XL line currently accounts for 28 percent of our passenger car motor oil sales. It’s no surprise. They are fantastic oils.
And now they are even better. We have beefed up the additive package and given the oils more extended drain punch. This falls in line with the vehicle manufacturers who are calling for longer drains. Some Toyota models, for example, call for 10,000-mile oil drain intervals, and Ford will equal that on some 2011 models. General Motors, of course, has lengthened its oil change recommendations with its oil life monitoring systems. As you will also read in this issue, the reformulated XL oils meet the new ILSAC GF-5 and API SN service requirements. They are better-performing oils with absolutely no increase in price. There is definite value in that.
To be certain, we have made substantial inroads into the installer market with our XL oils, but we still have work to do. Unfortunately, 90 percent of installers remain stuck on the 3,000-mile oil change recommendation, and reports indicate that by the year 2018, 80 percent of all drivers will be having their oil changed by them. Too many consumers, I am afraid, will continue to follow their 3,000-mile oil change advice. We have a major hurdle yet to cross and a huge market to capture.
To be continued…
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