Lubricants: The High-Performance Engine's Lifeline


Lubricants are used to minimize friction and wear and tear between surfaces. Most lubricants consist of 70% lubricant oil and up to 30% chemical compounds known as additives. The lubricants industry is steadily moving towards environmental sustainability and preserving natural resources. The industry is driven by factors such as: 

  • Increasing demand for high-performance engines and greater engine efficiencies 
  • Growing demand for emission control from automotive and industrial equipment exhausts 
  • Requirement for better cooling, improved engine performance, and longer engine lifespan 
  • Rising demand for electric vehicles and related engine fluids in developed as well as emerging economies 
  • Growth in manufacturing, automotive, and industrial sectors also drives the market 

Growth Trends in the Lubricant Market 

The lubricant market is growing in regions such as Europe and Asia-Pacific. Europe is the most developed, and Asia-Pacific is the fastest-growing region globally. The increase in population, growth in the middle class, urbanization, rapid industrialization, changes in lifestyle, growth in per capita income, improved government policies and spending, and other factors drive end-use industries such as automotive, manufacturing, construction, electronics, consumer products, and food & beverages. This growth in end-use industries, in turn, boosts lubricant consumption in the region. In addition, the incorporation of new technologies such as AI, machine learning, electric drive systems, hybrid drive systems, and so on are further expected to boost sectoral growth, thus propelling the lubricants market. 

End-use industry Growth Facts: 

  1. China is the largest automotive manufacturing country globally. Annual vehicle production in China accounts for around 30.0% of the global production of vehicles. 
  2. New energy vehicles (NEVs) boomed in China. Production was around 17,500 units in 2013 which went over 1.2 million units in 2020. 
  3. According to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, over 25 million vehicles were sold in 2020 in China. 
  4. In 2020, the German automotive sector listed a turnover of $423.9 billion, which is around 20.0% of the total industry revenue. 
  5. Advanced manufacturing is amongst the significant contributors to the GDP of Germany.  
  6. Germany is amongst the largest automation market. The country employs around 20,000 industrial robots utilized in various industries.  
  7. In India, the manufacturing sector recorded the highest growth in 2021. Initiatives such as Make in India and schemes such as FDI, and production-linked incentive (PLI) further bolster sector growth.  

The use of lubricants in cooling and proper transmission of power, reducing friction, separating moving parts for effective functioning, providing anti-tack properties, providing heat transferability, and protection against wear and corrosion mandates its use in engines and equipment. Advancement in end-use industries such as automotive and manufacturing and economic growth is expected to boost lubricant demand globally. 


Mineral-based lubricants are the most commonly used lubricants among the various types of lubricants, which include solid, semi-solid, and liquid lubricants. One of the recent reports published by Arizton on the mineral oil market states that around 2290 kilotons of mineral oils will be sold by 2027. 

The growth in the mineral oil market is largely associated with the growth in personal care markets, as mineral oil is used in a wide variety of cosmetics and skin creams. To maintain a competitive advantage over other players, key vendors are focusing to create new technologies and stay current with forthcoming advances. Also, existing global players are expanding their R&D efforts to guarantee that customer-centric product developments continue. Several countries in APAC, such as China and India, are major hubs for manufacturing mineral oil-based products. Both the countries have developed better supply chains and manufacturing infrastructure over the years. Factors such as rising foreign investment activities, easy accessibility to raw materials, and availability of cheap labor have encouraged major industrial manufacturers to establish their plants in APAC.  


  • Due to the Growing Demand from Personal Care Industry 
  • Due to the Increasing Demand from Pharmaceutical Industry 
  • Rising Chronic Diseases Creating Demand for Mineral Oil 
  • A surge in the Use of Technical Oil 


Base oils are refined crude oil base stocks that are used to manufacture automotive and industrial lubricants, oils, greases, rubber products, and white and paraffin oil. Base oils are relatively more polar in nature than paraffinic oils, and therefore, have exceptional cooling and low-temperature properties. Lubricants are used to minimize friction and wear and tear between surfaces. Most lubricants consist of 70% lubricant oil and up to 30% chemical compounds known as additives. 

Properties of Base Oil market

The rise in industrial production across developing countries is expected to accelerate the demand for base oil in the agriculture, construction, mining, and automotive sectors in the upcoming years. Early adopters of new technologies are expected to enjoy a competitive edge in the global base oil market.  


The global re-refined base oil market size was valued at USD 6.4 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 8.83 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 6.5% from 2022-to 2027. 

The re-refined base oil industry is evolving due to the change in climate which has increased environmental consciousness, and the pursuit of higher performance by manufacturers, resulting in the greater use of re-refined base stock.  

The production of base oil via re-refined processes does not use crude oil. Rather, used oils such as engine oil, hydraulic fluids, automotive oil, and gear oils used in cars, motorcycles, and other equipments are collected and re-refined using various technologies such as vacuum distillation, hydrotreating, clay treatment, and solvent extraction. In this way, re-refining base oil reduces reliance on crude oil. Furthermore, it saves energy by producing base oil from re-refining crude oil. Therefore, the re-refined base oil products have become widely popular in the global market.  


  • The government of Turkey has made it mandatory for lubricant manufacturers to incorporate 8% of re-refined base oil in lube production by 2022, according to a report by the Turkish Ministry for Environment and Urban Planning. 
  • In India, the government has made it mandatory for lubricant manufacturers to use 25% of re-refined base oil by 2023. 
  • In Avista’s re-refining plant in Germany and Denmark, the re-refined base oil capacity is 140,000 metric tons and 100,000 metric tons, respectively. However, the company is upgrading its capacity by 30,000 metric tons at each site. 


The global Group II & III base oil market was valued at USD 20 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 29.8 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 6.7% during the forecast period 2022-2027. 

The base oil market is experiencing a shift from group I base oil to group II & group III base oil driven by increased regulatory standards, circular economy, and demand for high-quality lubricants. In addition, the increasing demand for low viscosity and low volatility lubricants is growing due to the growing trend towards better fuel economy. Consequently, group I base oil plants have been closing globally because of the reduced demand for low-quality base oil formulations. Group II and Group III base oils are used across various lubricant applications in the automotive and industrial sectors due to their low sulfur content, low viscosity, and a higher saturation of chemical bonds. Higher bond saturation offers base oil a better anti-oxidation property, which reduces wear & tears on engine components, and this results in increased engine life.  


  • The installation of a catalytic dewaxing unit requires low investment, delivers outstanding performance at low temperature, and offers flexibility to produce both lubricant base stock and light distillates. This is fueling the demand for catalytic dewaxing technology for producing group II and III base oils. The global catalytic dewaxing group II & III base oil market is expected to reach USD 5.9 billion by 2027. 
  • In North America, the US and Canada are the major markets for group II & III base oil. The demand for group II & III base oil in North America is driven by stringent regulations with respect to emission standards, better fuel economy, and the growing trend for sustainability. 

Arizton Advisory & Intelligence provides practical, competitive, and knowledge-based consulting solutions to its global clients operating within the lubricants industry. We provide detailed, comprehensive, and actionable insights across each level of the value chain. Arizton aids its clients in attaining synergies, which help organizations to make informed decisions and devise marketing strategies for their businesses. Our tailored and research-oriented solutions help companies to evaluate and understand revenue-cost and profit analysis in the competitive PAO and lubricants industry 

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