Shell says its lubricants should be viewed in the same light as the most essential component with its input aiding the drive for ever-greater fuel efficiency.

The energy supplier made the comments at the Shell Technology Centre in Hamburg, where it showcased its Project M collaboration with The Gordon Murray Design Group and engine specialist, Geo Technology to improve fuel burn and powertrain efficiency.

“Lubricant should be considered as a design component, co-engineer hardware and fluids for optimal efficiency,” said Shell Lubricants Innovation Technology manager, Bob Mainwaring in Hamburg. “Treating lubricants in isolation would be wrong. Bringing everything together gives you the best chance to get to the fuel economy goals. One fifth of total fuel your are burning is to overcome friction.

Affordable is key – you want it to be low priced – not only to the Western world but to emerging economies as well. Our [view] in Shell is internal combustion engines will still form a significant part of transport to 2050 and beyond.”

Shell is providing the fluids for the car specifically ‘designing’ the motor oil to enhance overall efficiency.

The energy producer notes it would be a normal assumption that oil, greases and fuels are added at the end of a concept-car build project such as the T25S, but Project M Shell aims to show what can be achieved when its products are integrated into the design, right from the start.

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The three parties last collaborated in 1988 on Formula 1 drivers, Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost’s Honda-powered, Shell-fuelled race cars, which won all but one Grands Prix that season, a record which still stands.