There are various ways you can legally boost the performance of your car, ranging from expensive modifications which involve adding a turbocharger or ‘low-cost’ options like using after-market additives which are mixed with the petrol. From customer surveys, Shell has found that there is a segment of motorists in Malaysia who want an extra bit of performance from their engine and are willing to pay for that edge.
For such motorists, Shell Malaysia has introduced a third choice at its pumps known as Formula Shell V-Power. Positioned above its two other unleaded fuels, this new product costs, on average, 15 sen more than premium 97-octane Shell petrol.
The new fuel contains Vaporon ‘energy boosters’, additives which “unleash extra energy to provide more power the instant you step on the accelerator – just like turbocharging your engine’, claims Shell Malaysia.
But the additives are not the main reason why Formula Shell V-Power provides the performance enhancement (although Shell regards it as a ‘re-engineered fuel’); the real secret, which was developed by the engineers working on fuels for the Ferrari’s Formula 1 racing cars, is the refining process to get the fuel. During the refining process, the fuel created is more dense and as the amount of power generated is really a result of the mass of the fuel and air that is used in the combustion process (rather than the volume), this in effect allows the new Shell fuel to ‘contain’ more potential power.
It’s the same principle as using a turbocharger or having extra valves – to force more of the air-fuel mixture into the combustion chamber. In this case, there is no use of hardware and the fuel itself is made more dense to start with.
The 97-octane Formula Shell V-Power is also said to offer other similar benefits as the other Shell fuels, ie engine cleansing, maintenance of engine cleanliness, etc, thanks to the advanced additive package its formulation contains.
The new petrol has been thoroughly tested in Shell’s UK laboratories and also in a test vehicle run on Malaysian roads for an extended period. It is compatible with other petrols but if mixed, Shell warns that the benefits may be reduced. No side effects are expected at all and the petrol will not have any effect on catalytic converters which chemically convert the toxic elements in the exhaust gas into harmless carbon dioxide and water vapour.
The same product has been introduced in some other countries (where it is marketed under other names such as Formula Shell XO and Optimax) and is available at over 230 stations in Peninsula Malaysia.
Shell Malaysia is confident that Malaysian motorists will accept the extra charge for the new petrol, which is necessary because it costs more to make, because they will notice the improvement in performance immediately. After all, many have already been spending a bit extra putting in additives to get extra performance so now Shell Malaysia is doing the same thing for you in every litre of Formula Shell V-Power.