• Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology is a fully-synthetic motor oil

  • The lubricant is formulated to last up to 12,000 kilometres

  • Engine is now smoother, faster-revving and has gained extra RPMs

We’ve covered Shell Advance Ultra with Pureplus’ origins in a previous article (click here to read more). I’ve been using this lubricant in my 2011 Kawasaki ER-6f since May of this year.

There were two grades to choose from at that particular time: 10W-40 and 10W-50. The former grade is recommended by Kawasaki as the primary choice, while the second is recommended by the manufacturer for countries with high ambient temperatures.

While the second grade would’ve been perfect, I decided to go ahead with the 10W-40 choice just to test how it would fare, since it’s the primary choice.

During the pour, the oil was a very clear, almost golden yellow. That’s due to the PurePlus Technology. Shell’s PurePlus Technology results from Shell’s gas-to-liquid crystal-clear base oil which is virtually free from impurities such as sulfur, mercaptans, mecury, nitrogen, aromatics (click here to read more).

The real difference, of course, was what happened when the engine was started and running. The Shell Advance Ultra’s effect was immediate. The ER-6 range is well-known for its loud ticking sound emanating from the cylinder head, but with the Shell lubricant, the sound was reduced significantly at idle. The sound totally disappeared when the helmet went on and riding.

Engine response was quick, even when the oil was new. (A new oil is still more viscous or “thicker,” compared to older oil.) More importantly, the engine didn’t feel stressed when accelerating hard through the gears and had no qualms about holding high RPMs for extended periods.

Additionally, there’s a 300 RPM drop when cruising at all speeds. Lower revs equate to lower fuel consumption.

The oil has since covered 3000km. I’ll be honest here: The biggest complaint heard in the market about most, if not all oils, is their inability to hold its grade and performance throughout its lifespan. Most bikers change their oils every 5000km, regardless if they used fully-synthetic or semi-synthetic lubricants. In their opinion, lubricants would experience a performance drop by the time it hits the 2500km to 3000km mark.

Now, I’ve used almost every oil available in the market, even some that aren’t; and I can happily report that the Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus has not a dropped in its performance thus far. The ticking in my bike’s valvetrain is still soft, the engine still revs willingly, and the 300 RPM reduction is still present. That has made riding a hoot especially in the city as overtaking is easy – a quick blast of the throttle is all that’s needed.

Of course, the oil has changed colour, but extracting some of it out of the engine revealed that it is still reddish brown instead of being totally black or worse, grayish black. I’m positive that should be credited to the PurePlus technology, since it started out free from impurities (click here for more info).

Shell has iterated that the Advance Ultra with PurePlus technology is formulated to be long-lasting. Because of that, its official service life is at 12000km for Ducatis. While different engines “use” their lubricants differently, if so, it means the oil in my engine has covered only at 25% of its lifespan.

A further report at 6000km is forthcoming from our test and I shall push it to the 12000km cycle. But at this moment, the Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus has already surpassed my expectations.

  • Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology line of fully synthetic lubricants was launched in 2014.

  • What is PurePlus Technology?

  • What is Gas-to-Liquids (GTL) processing?

Shell’s Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology signifies a new breed of lubricants. But although lubricants may be slippery as they need to be, but it’s always a sticky subject amongst discerning motorcyclists. Truth is, there exists misconceptions, myths, half-truths and truths surrounding the subject of lubricants. We hope to put things right with this series of articles on the subject of lubricants.

Shell launched their new line of fully synthetic lubricants called Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology in 2014. What makes the new range interesting is the groundbreaking PurePlus technology. (Click here for our coverage of the launch and preview.)

The term “PurePlus” is derived crystal-clear base oil that’s more than 99% free from impurities, resulting from the process which created it.

See the TVC below.

Traditionally, a base oil is the resulting product of refining or synthesising crude oil or other hydrocarbon sources. The lubricant producer then adds their additive package to yield the desired properties of the end-product. But while the additives play the biggest role in determining the level of protection and longevity of a lubricant, the base oil plays a big role too.

How crude oil look like

Shell’s PurePlus base oil is derived from natural gas (the cleanest burning fossil fuel), through a process called gas-to-liquids (GTL). The GTL process produces a base oil that is closer to the end-product, without requiring to be refined further.

The first step in a GTL process is to convert the natural gas into syngas (synthetic gas). The syngas is then processed to remove harmful impurities such as sulfur, mercaptans, mecury, nitrogen, aromatics, resulting in a base oil that’s crystal clear and feels like wax at room temperature.

See the video below for Shell’s GTL process.

Having impurities in the base oil is undesirable as it may contribute to the oil breaking down quickly and even to engine wear and tear if taken past its oil change period. See how oils decades ago turn into sludge that gunks up the engine? Also, in the case of the oil being burned in the combustion chamber due to leaky piston rings or/and valve seal, the emission doesn’t harm the environment as much.

Check out this video below. Although it’s for the Helix Ultra, it’s also the result of Shell’s PurePlus Technology.

In other words, the base oil and additive package play important roles in ensuring a lubricant that fully protects your engine. A weak link on either side is a compromise.

Anyway, Shell then combines their proprietary Active Cleansing additives to the base oil to produce a clean, 100% fully-synthetic lubricant. These additives protect the engine by cleaning the engine of dirt, corrosion, sludge and byproducts of the combustion process such as carbon, water, sulfur from the fuel (which becomes sulfuric acid), among many others.

These are all important, even critical, aspects of motorcycle engine protection. Motorcycle engines have smaller capacities compared to the cars, but produce much higher power output. Consequently, motorcycle engines produce higher heat and forces.

An engine full of sludge

Shell’s aim for the Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology is to help maintain longer engine peak power through enhanced oil viscosity, maintaining oil performance not only in extreme temperatures but also in low temperatures. Oil needs to flow quickly during and immediately after start-up.

As for durability, Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology is claimed to last twice as long as other oils.

The GTL process has been in constant development for more than 40 years at the Shell Technology Center in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Shell built a pilot plant in Amsterdam in 1983 to study the feasibility of the GTL process further, before opening the first GTL plant in Bintulu, Sarawak in 1993. The Bintulu plant produces 14,700 barrels per day. 2011 saw the opening of the massive Pearl GTL plant in Qatar, which produces 140,000 barrels per day.

Shell Pearl GTL Plant in Qatar

Stay tuned for our review of the Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology soon!

Shell Malaysia previews new Shell Advance Ultra with PurePlus Technology motorcycle oil at 2014 Malaysian MotoGP weekend.



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