Ever wondered? you taking your ride to a petrol pump and while filling the fuel you come across a tag called Xtra Premium. The thing stopping you from getting that fuel is the price, but is it something you missing with paying less for fuel? Is getting premium fuel any good? Let’s find out.

Choose Fuel Wisely
Choose Fuel Wisely

What exactly is Premium Petrol?

To make things clear we have to first see what classifies into premium fuel. Long story short, premium fuel has a higher octane number than conventional petrol.

Hyundai 1.0-litre Turbo Petrol | Powerful Engines in India
Hyundai GDI Turbo Petrol Engine
  • FYI, octane number is the measurement of petrol’s igniting performance. For instance here in Indian the octane number of petrol is 87 and the premium is around 91.
  • That said, conventional fuel with 87octane will be great working in the engines with low compression ration.
  • But talking about the 91octane, it can withstand more heat and pressure before igniting, hence it can withstand higher compression ratios.

In other words, a fuel with a higher octane number will be better for high-end performance cars and motorcycles. But here in India, premium fuel is a bit different, it sure has a higher octane number but also has additives in it. These additives act as both a boon as well as a curse. More on this later in the article.

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Normal petrol

With the octane number clear, normal petrol has an octane number of about 87 here in India. That is a bit low compared to some other countries like the UK where the basic petrol is 91 octane. Until now you might be thinking is it okay to run your car on low octane fuel? Let us clear your doubts.

Tata Tiago Revotron Petrol Engine
Tata Tiago Revotron Petrol Engine

Which Fuel is Better for Your Ride? and why?

First things first, to know which is the best fuel for your ride, READ the owner’s manual. If it says normal fuel, follows it with your eyes closed.

  • Well, the engineers in the company specially designed the engine with the fuel in mind. Let me tell you, designing an engine is no joke, it requires super precision and passion both. It says 87 octane doesn’t change and if it says, premium or 91 octane again, don’t change.
  • Be it any engine, running the engine with the fuel which is not recommended will surely damage the engine, the most prominent drawback is knocking. It is the very same annoying sound no one wants to hear from their engine. It’ll hamper the reliability and longevity of the engine.
  • Generally, companies making high compression engines recommend high octane fuel or premium petrol. KTM engines are one of the prime examples of a motor running on high compression ratio.
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Premium Petrol VS Normal Petrol
What if you put premium fuel in an engine with low compression ratio?

This question is something that is running through our heads. Well, let’s look at the former scenario.

  • As mentioned earlier the premium fuel here in our country has additives, where these additives are good for a motor running with high compression ration, these can have serious problems in engines with low compression ratio.
  • As fuel with higher octane number requires more compression ratio to ignite properly, with low compression, this might lead to incomplete combustion leaving some residue behind. This could lead to carbon disposition over time.
Octane Numbers
Octane Numbers available in India | Image Source (1)
What if you put normal fuel in an engine with a high compression ratio?

On the other hand, running a high compression engine on low octane fuel will lead to pre-ignition. Wherein the fuel ignites before the spark from the plug. This can also lead to knocking in the engine.

Also, Read 10 Reasons Why the 2020 Honda City should be your first Sedan!

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Fun Read: 8 Car Damaging Habits that are Unintentionally Ruining Your Car!

Well, now you know which is a better fuel for your ride and why. Stay safe on-road and happy motoring.

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