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Choosing 10w-50 oil for your car or motorcycle? In this article, we will tell you what you need to pay attention to when choosing 10w-50 viscosity oil.

10w-50 oil is typically used for motorcycles and high-end sports cars. For modern four-stroke engines of sports and road motorcycles, 4T 10W-50 oil is usually used.

To avoid the trouble that comes from using the wrong oil, it’s important to read the engine oil instructions.

How is 10w-50 deciphered?

The answer to this question is in the viscosity and temperature characteristics of the blend, which change depending on the temperature outside the car.

SAE 10w-50 designation means:

  • 10w – a low-temperature parameter, indicating that the oil can be used in winter. At that oil 10w-50 will not crystallize, ensures cold engine starting and fluid pumping through the lubrication system.
  • 50 – a high-temperature rating, indicating that the oil can be used at high temperatures. In this case, the protective film, which is formed on the engine components due to the oil, will not be torn and will protect the power unit from overheating.

Automotive oil manufacturers are trying to make their products unique with the help of special additives, which are added to the base of the engine mixture. The majority of well-known brands are working together with the manufacturers of several car brands in developing an oil composition. The composition of such oil does not react with the material from which car engine parts are made, and provides normal operation of the power unit, depending on its technical characteristics.

Therefore, when selecting an engine oil, it is important to consider the recommendations of the car dealer. If you pick too thick a mixture, it will increase the load on the engine and will not be able to form a protective film in the friction nodes. The too-liquid mixture, forms a very thin protective film in friction pairs, it will break – it will lead to dry friction of parts.

10w-50 Motor Oil Best Choice

Best choice

Castrol 10W-50 4-Stroke Motorcycle Oil

Castrol POWER1 is an advanced, synthetic, premium quality engine oil designed for 4-stroke motorcycles. Motot Oil with Power Release Formula is designed specifically for bikers who love the exhilaration of riding.

  • 4,9 Rating
  • API SL.
  • JASO MA-2.

Best 10w-50 motor oils on the market:


Motul 5100-Ester 10w50 Syn Blend

Motul 5100-Ester 10w50 Syn Blend


  • Rating: 4,7 ∗∗∗∗∗
  • API: SL/SH/SG.
  • JASO MA.
  • Ester technology to improve engine response.


Liqui Moly Motorbike 4T Synthetic 10W-50 Race Engine Oil

Liqui Moly Motorbike 4T Synthetic 10W-50 Race Engine Oil


  • Rating: 4,5 ∗∗∗∗∗
  • API: SN+, SL.
  • JASO MA2.


Maxima SXS Synthetic 10w50 Side by Side Engine Oil

Maxima SXS Synthetic 10w50 Side by Side Engine Oil


  • Rating: 5,0 ∗∗∗∗∗
  • API: SL, SJ, SH, SG.
  • JASO.


Red Line Oil RED Power Sports 10w50 Motor Oil

Red Line Oil RED Power Sports 10w50 Motor Oil


  • Rating: 4,8 ∗∗∗∗∗
  • For Pollini and Cobra motocross Mini Cycles.
  • Provide quick shifts and unmatched performance.


Lucas Oil SXS UTV Synthetic Engine Oil 10W50

Lucas Oil SXS UTV Synthetic Engine Oil 10W50


  • Rating: 4,0 ∗∗∗∗∗
  • JASO MA2.
  • Reduces engine noise, helps prevent leaks.

Types of engine oils 10w-50

The composition of modern motor oils is formed on the principle of adding a specific set of additives to their base (sometimes called base oil).

The base can be obtained:

  1. From artificially synthesized organic compounds – in this case, the oils are called synthetic.
    A mixture of mineral and synthetic bases – semi-synthetic oils.
  2. Fully synthetic engine oil 10w-50

Fully synthetic oil provides higher viscosity, resistance to oxidation and thermal degradation, and helps fight oil sludge. It helps improve fuel efficiency and can even increase vehicle power by reducing engine drag.

Fully synthetic oil is ideal for vehicles that require maximum performance and high levels of lubrication. If you live in a climate with very cold winters or very hot summers, or if you use your vehicle for towing or hauling cargo, synthetic oil may be the best type of oil for your vehicle. Older engines can also benefit from synthetic oil because it can help prevent the harmful sludge that some older engines are prone to.

Since the cost of synthetic motor oil is higher than regular oil, consult with your technician to see if this oil is right for your car.

Synthetic Blended Motor Oil 10w-50

Synthetic oil has many of the characteristics of fully synthetic oil but at a lower cost. This type of oil consists of a blend of synthetic and conventional base oils with the addition of some additives that provide additional resistance to oxidation and excellent low-temperature properties. Synthetic blends make it easy for drivers to switch from conventional oil to synthetic oil, so this type of oil is becoming increasingly popular among today’s drivers. It’s also a great intermediate option for drivers who want the added protection and performance of synthetic oil but aren’t willing to pay for a full switch to synthetic oil.

Conventional 10w-50 Motor Oil

This oil is great for low-loaded, recent model cars with low to medium mileage and a simple engine design.

Characteristics of SAE 10w-50 oil

Synthetics and semi-synthetic with viscosity index 10w-50 are produced with additives in the form of long molecules. In the process of synthesis, they are given the properties that determine the characteristics of the oil. Semi-synthetic oil is made from a mixture of mineral and synthetic. The quantitative ratio is set by the manufacturers, for example, 40/60 or 30/70. Unlike synthetic oil, semi-synthetic oil is cheaper. Its original properties are lost sooner during operation.

Thus, the engine oil marked 10w-50 is all-season engine oil.

It copes well with the following functions:

  • protection of parts from wear as a result of dry friction;
  • engine cooling during operation;
  • removal of combustion products waste;
  • protection against sludge and oxide deposits on the metal walls of the engine parts;
  • prolongation of the warranty period of the vehicle operation;
  • reducing fuel and oil consumption;
  • extension of the lubricant replacement period.

Lubricants of this class are mostly used in different types of equipment. 10w-50 oil is used in motorcycle engines, as well as in gasoline-powered tools, such as chain saws, lawnmowers and some types of construction equipment like excavators and bulldozers.

Classification of SAE 10w-50 engine oils

All engine lubricants are classified according to their viscosity. This classification is called SAE. According to this form of classification, they can be divided into classes according to its fluidity, that is, from the ability of the liquid lubricant to spread over the surface of the part and at the same time to adhere to the metal surface. This classification is used worldwide.

Classification of motor oils according to JASO

ASO (Japan Automobile Standards Organization) is a Japanese automobile standards organization.

Enormous experience in the operation and production of two-stroke and four-stroke motorcycle engines have been accumulated in Japan, so JASO standards specifications are gaining wide recognition.

The JASO standards divide all motorcycle oils into broad categories:

  • 4-stroke motorcycle and gasoline engines
  • MB are low-friction engine oils. Not suitable for motorcycles with a wet clutch.
  • MA-1 is a medium oil with a coefficient of friction in this classification. Suitable for motorcycles with a wet clutch and low load.
  • MA-2 is the oil with the highest coefficient of friction. Ideal for sports bikes and heavy loads.

SAE and API classification 10w-50

Car oils are classified according to two key indicators: the scope of use: gasoline/diesel engine, turbocharged engine; oil viscosity.

The standards by which lubricants are classified are considered the same for all oils. The most common is the SAE and API classifications.

The API standard introduces two groups of quality classes, prefixed with S (gasoline engines) and C (diesel).

The letter after the prefix defines a particular class, assigned to new classes in order of alphabetical order: API SP oil meets more stringent requirements than API SL.

If a particular oil grade can be used in engines for both types of properties, a double class is specified – for example, API SN / CF.

API classification divides oils into three groups according to their purpose and quality:

  • S – for gasoline engines;
  • C – for diesel engines;
  • EC – universal energy-saving oil.

The other letters indicate the class the grease belongs to. All classes differ from each other:

  • API SL – oils for engines in cars manufactured after 2000. For multi-valve, turbocharged, with work on lean mixtures, with increased requirements for energy efficiency and environmental friendliness.
  • API SM – oils for engines of cars manufactured after 2004. Ability to be certified according to ILSAC energy-saving category.
  • API SN – oils for engines of vehicles manufactured after 2010. Designed for oils used in the most advanced gasoline engines of passenger and sports cars and small vans. Some oils in this category may comply with the ILSAC GF-5 specification and qualify as energy-saving.
  • API SP – oils for engines of cars manufactured after 2020. Designed for oils used in the most advanced gasoline engines of passenger and sport utility vehicles and small vans. Some oils in this category may meet the ILSAC GF-6 specification.

Recommended oil brands 10w-50:

  • Red Line.
  • Maxima.
  • Liqui Moly.
  • Motul.
  • Mobil.
  • Castrol.
  • Lucas Oil.
  • Amsoil.

The cost of engine oil 10w-50:

  • Up to $25: synthetic-based 10w-50 oils
  • Up to $30: synthetic oils 10w-50 popular brands
  • Up to $50: synthetic oils 10w-50 premium brands


A motorist should consider the following criteria when choosing an oil:

  1. It is necessary to be guided by the manufacturer’s recommendations vehicle, usually, this information can be found in the instruction manual. If it is found that a lubricant has been poured, which is not in the list of recommended products, it is possible to lose warranty service.
  2. The viscosity of the fluid you pour in should allow the engine to run normally.

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Max Welder (Reviewseye)

Max Welder (Reviewseye)

Max Welder is a mechanic enthusiast. Currently, working at a small company. Experienced in electronics, car tools, and security systems. In his spare time, he writes articles for various blogs.

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