A while back, I received an email from Bill Anderson, the chief judge for the 7,000-member Cadillac & LaSalle Club. They will be holding their 2017 Annual Grand National car show in McLean, Virginia, this July and asked if I could chair a discussion on engine oils for classic cars. That got me thinking about the subject and started me on an investigation into what information is out there.
First, a little background to make sure everyone is on the same page. The original motor oils were sold primarily on brand name. Each oil company produced oils that met the needs of their customers (or that their customers were convinced worked). What tests there were provided only limited information. In fact, most motor oils produced through the early 1930s had little or no additives.