When it comes to filling up your car’s petrol tank, it’s important to know which type of fuel your car requires. In New Zealand, there are three main types of petrol available: 91 octane, 95 octane, and 98 octane. But what petrol does my car take NZ, you might ask yourself?

More on that, in some instances. You might often hear motorists ask if there was any added benefit using 95 or 98 octane even though their manufacturer asks to use 91-octane petrol. To be frank, there are none! You must use what your manufacturer has specified.

Contemporary engines are built with such precise tolerances that utilizing the proper fuel grade is critical to ensuring engine longevity and top performance. This can also help you prevent expensive and needless vehicle breakdowns or repairs.

Thus, choosing the right fuel is necessary for the sustainability of your precious motor vehicle. Besides, no one would want a smoking Outlander in their neighbourhood—think about the sound and air pollution, for instance.

Don’t worry! In this article, we’ll help you figure out the type of fuel you need for your car, how each of them is different from one another, and the reasons why one manufacturer might recommend one over the other.

What Petrol Does My Car Take NZ?

Each type of vehicle takes its own poison—petrol cars need petrol, and diesel cars need diesel. In recent days, many Kiwis have been looking for more sustainable choices like hybrids, which might be a whole different case.

However, as the current price of energy is skyrocketing, you might get stuck with the fuel question.

To know what kind of fuel your car needs, just look under the fuel cap, and it will say so. If it doesn’t say anything like “petrol” or “diesel,” check if it says “UNLEADED FUEL ONLY,” meaning your car needs petrol.

Also, in some rare cases, if you fail to detect the fuel type from the cap, check the registration papers, and you’ll find it in the slip.

Knowing what petrol I should use in New Zealand

If you still ask yourself “what petrol does my car take NZ?”, you can check your vehicle’s owner’s manual or consult a mechanic. The manual will specify the recommended octane rating for your car and whether it can run on diesel or not.

Additionally, most petrol stations in New Zealand have a list of the recommended petrol for different types of vehicles.

Types of Petrol in New Zealand: Understanding 91-, 95- and 98-octane Ratings

The three octane-grades of petrol that you can find in New Zealand are represented by the digits 91, 95, and 98. This is the amount of compression that the fuel can sustain before igniting. The greater the value, the greater the compression.

What is a 91 octane Grade?

First, let’s start with 91octane. This type of petrol is also known as “regular” or “unleaded” fuel and is the most commonly used petrol in New Zealand. It is suitable for most cars on the road, including older and smaller vehicles, and is the cheapest option available.

Why 95 octane Grade is Premium

On the other hand, 95 octane, also known as “premium” or “unleaded” fuel, is a higher-octane fuel that is suitable for newer, high-performance vehicles. These cars are designed to run on higher octane fuel and will perform better and more efficiently when using 95 octane.

Could My Sports Car Require 98 octane?

In most cases, it might! A 98 octane, often known as ‘Ultra Premium,’ gives superior performance and engine function while emitting less pollution, but it is the most costly gasoline kind as a result. 98 is mostly utilized for sports and racing automobiles, as well as vehicles with ‘highly tuned’ engines.

Engines are designed to run on petrol with a minimum octane rating. As a result, you should not use petrol with a lower grade than is advised. Just check the manufacturer’s note under the fuel cap to find the numbers.

If you can’t, well, now you know that you’ll find them marked as unleaded, premium unleaded, and ultra premium unleaded for 91, 95, and 98 octane grades, respectively.

Is There Any Advantage to Using Premium Fuel When My Car Requires Regular Unleaded?

As previously said, if your vehicle demands premium petrol, you should use it. Otherwise, you risk causing major harm to your vehicle. However, you might wonder if it is still a viable alternative if your vehicle does not require high-octane fuel.

Most contemporary engines will (very marginally) adapt to higher octane gasoline than the minimum suggested. You will get either slightly greater mileage or improved performance based on how often and how long you drive.

In reality, however, the improvement is marginal, and the premium price for higher octane usually outweighs the economic advantage of using it.

Thus, even if it runs marginally better, running 98 in an engine built for 91 is not an economically reasonable decision. Any additional mileage or enhanced performance is insufficient to offset the additional expense you’d have to bear.

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