Don’t worry, your Honda can take RON 95

Don’t worry, your Honda can take RON 95

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As we close in on 1 Sept 2009, the topic of RON95 continues to occupy discussion at the mamaks and kopitiams. “Eh, what is RON95 ar?” “Use RON95 will less power ar? or drink more petrol ar?” … and the discussions go on. The fact of the matter is that because the number attached to the RON95 label is lower than the one on RON97, there is the generated perception that RON95 is the inferior petrol, leading motorists to wonder if it would do harm to their beloved cars.

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RON95 compatible

The rule of thumb is this, as long as the petrol used is of equivalent or higher RON rating than specified in the manual, things will go fine. Your engine will not suffer losses in power, neither would it consume more petrol. Happily, for Honda owners at least, the manufacturer has come out with an official announcement that all their cars, bar the Civic Type R will quite happy burn RON95 in their combustion chambers.

Not this one though…

“Since 2001, all Honda cars require a minimum RON91, hence, any number above the minimum RON is safe. The switch therefore will not affect the performance and fuel efficiency of the vehicle. Compromisation of performance and fuel efficiency will only occur when the RON is lower than the minimum requirement,” said Mr. Toru Takahashi, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Honda Malaysia.

“Except for Civic Type R, of which we recommend RON97 because of its high performance engine. A higher RON will thus produce more power for this performance sedan. Otherwise, the performance and fuel consumption may be affected,” he added.

The primary concern for using low octane (RON) rating fuels is the phenomenon of knocking, where pockets of unburnt fuel simultaneously detonate not due to ignition of the spark plug. The shockwaves caused by these uncontrolled explosions greatly accelerate wear and tear of engines, besides the immediate adverse effect on performance and efficiency.

Honda Malaysia has informed the local press that all their cars are equipped with knock sensors, which would retard the engine’s ignition timing upon detection of knocking. As mentioned by Takahashi-san, the sensors in Honda Malaysia’s cars can run on fuel with a minimum octane number of 91.

Owners of pre-2001 Hondas, or Hondas not brought in via Honda Malaysia are advised to cross-check the minimum RON requirement in their owner’s manual.

For more information, please visit or give their operators a ring at 1-800-88-2020.


Note: Official press release from Honda is posted in our forum here.


  1. Singapore R has been using RON95 for a while now without complaint. Sad that HM opted on the safe side (their side) with our R.

  2. steven, I don’t think RON95 will be an issue with the Innova, but all the same, let me present your question to UMW.

    kaishio, companies usually prefer to err on the side of caution when it comes to making such claims. In Japan, the Civic Type R was actually tested to run on RON100 petrol. The engine can actually take as low as RON91 as well, but with severely reduced performance.

  3. Honda claimed that Ron 95 is usable for their cars (except Civic type R) but through my experience with my City- Idsi, I used 2 tanks full of Ron95 and it is a downside. The FC cost more, paying 16+sens for 1Km with Ron95 as well as lost of power and sound from engine roar. When Ron97 old price of Rm1.80, my FC is 13+ per Km. City can easily gets 12-13Km per liter.Compare with the Ron95 and Ron97(old price) every Km I am paying 3 sens for using Ron95. I am paying extra 30-39 sens per liter! Now I switch back to Ron 97.
    When I called Honda Malaysia and went to their SC if to reset ECU or tune up will help. Same reply,..” the manual book said Ron91..” They told me honestly, even if they reset the ECU or tune up, it will still be the same like previously. So, Honda do not have the solution to help us to use Ron95 efficiently and effectively. Very disappointed!

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