Finding the Right Motul Oil for Your Saab – A Brief Guide


The European automotive industry has it all. It’s a diverse ecosystem of brands that are competing with each other, always trying to offer something new, better, faster. Then there’s Saab. Together with Volvo, this once innovative brand formed the Swedish duo that would provide drivers all over the world something completely different in terms of performance, aesthetics, and engineering.

The era of Saab is, unfortunately, coming to an end. This brand has run its course and is no longer producing new vehicles. With that said, there’s still plenty of relatively young Saabs out there that require tender loving care through quality maintenance. Our goal today is to show you a variety of Motul oils and lubricants that can prolong your Saab’s life and keep everything running smoothly for years to come.  

Can You Use Motul Oil in Saab Cars?

Motul is one of the leading manufacturers of automotive lubricants and fluids. The company has been working closely with several European, North American, and Asian car manufactures to create custom-tailored oils for their cars. Because of that, you’ll find BMW specific Motul oils, a complete Mercedes specific line, etc.

Since Saab went out of business in December of 2011, Motul doesn’t offer a unique line of products designed specifically for this car brand. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t use Motul lubricants in your Saab.

There are several motor oils, transmission oils, and brake fluids that aren’t only compatible with various Saab models but can improve the life span of these vehicles. Motul is one of the rare brands that produce lubricants for cars ranging from pre-1950 classics to high-performance racing vehicles. Needless to say, they offer quality lubricants for all eras of cars.

Why Motul?

Car enthusiasts are a pretty easy going bunch when it comes to just about anything. Anything but motor oils. Asking for a motor oil recommendation will often yield as many answers are people are responding. One of the reasons for this is the fact that there are many excellent brands out there offering some pretty impressive lubricants.

With that said, Motul stands out. This brand has been at the very edge of automotive lubricant research and development since the late 1950s. Not only did they invent the first-ever 100% synthetic car engine oil, but they kept on improving the concept. That process never stopped either. It’s this constant drive to innovate that makes Motul stand out from the rest.

What Specific Benefits Does Motul Bring to the Table?

As far as concrete, specific benefits you’re getting when using Motul’s lubricants, it comes down to each individual blend. However, what all Saab compatible Motul motor oils have in common is the improved reduction of engine wear. Most of Motul’s blends create a strong oil film that protects various engine components as you drive the car. More importantly, you’re getting better cold start protection.

Running an engine while it’s cold is where most of the wear occurs. With Motul’s improved blends, all of the engine components are getting the necessary lubrication even though the oil pump hasn’t distributed the oil all around the engine. We’re talking several seconds of increased friction until oil spread normalizes. Those seconds matter as they accumulate over time.

Considering that the last Saab, the last generation 9-5, left the production line in 2011, it’s fair to say that most Saab cars are showing at least a 100,000 miles on the odometer. Many of them show much more. Once you get into high mileage numbers, engine care becomes the top priority. With that in mind, let’s check out a few recommended motor oils, transmission oils, and brake fluids for Saabs.

Motul 8100 X-Clean 5W40

Motul 8100 series of synthetic oils is undoubtedly one of Motul’s most impressive feats to date. This entire lineup of products was designed to meet the minimum requirements of a number of different brands. It does much more than that. The 8100 series is comprised of several various subcategories of oils which are meant for different applications.

The one Motul recommends for late model Saabs such as the 2006 and younger 9-3 and 9-5, is the 8100 X-Clean series. There are two options within this lineup, including the Motul 8100 X-Clean 5W40 and the 8100 X-Clean EFE 5W30. We feel that the standard X-Clean 5W40 is the better of the two and is perfectly suitable for most applications.

The EFE designated version of this oil was designed to meet the latest EURO emissions standards and isn’t that much different compared to the regular X-Clean 5W40 synthetic oil.

There’s plenty of reasons why this particular blend should end up in your engine. For starters, it brings improved oil film resistance, just like we’ve mentioned earlier. The reduction of friction within the motor is noticeable. Another noticeable thing is the improved resistance to high temperatures, which reduces overall oil consumption in the long run. Last but not least, this oil has a positive effect on fuel economy as well.

Engine Oil Change Kit (5W-40) (8 Liter) (X-CLEAN 8100)
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Motul 6100 Synergie+ 10W40

Next up is another excellent engine oil that has introduced innovation to the market. Namely, this was the first 10W40 oil to meet Mercedes Benz’s strict MB299.3 standard. Motul 6100 Synergie+ 10W40 was designed for use in diesel and gasoline engines equipped with catalytic converters. The main benefit of this particular blend is its positive effect on fuel efficiency. Motul claims a 1.2% increase in fuel efficiency compared to a regular SAE 15W40 oil.

With that said, this oil features the Technosynthese technology that further improves its lubricating power. As a result, you’re looking at better lubrication all around, less friction, solid anti-oxidation properties as well as good anti-foaming properties.

This oil is suitable for use in first-generation Saab 9-3 that was produced from 1998 to 2003.

Engine Oil (10w40) (1 Liter) (Synergie+ 6100)
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What About Older Saab Models?

We’ve shown you a few options that will work great in last-gen Saabs, but what about all of the vintage models? If you’re a proud owner of a Saab 900, you have several options available to you. Here’s a brief overview:

  • Motul 8100 Eco-Nergy 5W30 Fully Synthetic Oil – We’ve already talked about the 8100 series of oils, so this particular one needs no special introduction. The main difference between the Eco-Nergy and the X-Clean is the strong accent on fuel efficiency with the former. You’re still getting the base protection that is common for all 8100 oils, as well as improved oil film and all of the other goodies.
  • Motul 8100 Eco-Lite 5W30 – This is another version of the 8100 synthetic oil that is focused on improving the fuel economy. However, it also brings advanced oxidation resistance as well as anti-deposits protection. Motul claims that this oil allows for faster RPM increase, faster oil pressure build-up, and overall better oil distribution everywhere within the engine compared to an average SAE 5W30 alternative.
  • Motul 4100 Power 15W50 – Last but not least, we have Motul 4100 Power with its rock-solid formula that has been proven to improve the performance of high mileage vehicles. This is a High-Performance Technosynthese lubricant that was designed for use in high-power, large displacement engines. This is a great alternative to the more modern 8100 series if you’re looking for something that is proven.
Engine Oil (15w50) (1 Liter) (Power 4100)
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Brake Fluids

As far as brake fluids go, you can’t go wrong with Motul’s DOT 5.1. This is a 100% synthetic brake fluid that features a higher than the average dry boiling point of 516°F. The main reason why we recommend this brake fluid is due to its improved performance in modern as well as older anti-locking brake systems. 

Motul’s DOT 5.1 brings better overall ABS response time as it has no issues getting inside every nook and cranny of an average ABS. Just make sure not to mix it with a DOT 5 brake fluid. As far as which cars, you can use this in, and there are no limitations. Motul’s DOT 5.1 fluid is backward compatible with DOT 3 and DOT 4 manufacturer recommendations.

Brake Fluid (DOT 5.1) (500ml)
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Motul Transmission Oil

If you’re driving a late model Saab 9-3 or 9-5, we recommend that you use Motul Motylgear series extreme pressure lubricant. Alternatively, you can also use the Gear 300 75W90

Former is a more niche type of lubricant that offers high-temperature resistance and better performance under high pressures. The latter, on the other hand, is a more general-purpose transmission lubricant. Either one of these will give you better performance than stock transmission oil.

Differential Oil (75w90) (1 Liter) (Gear 300)
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Find the Right Lubricants for Your Car

If you’re unsure which of these oils will work in your Saab, simply go to our online store and use our navigation and search tools. You’ll be prompted to enter the yearmake, and model of your Saab, which will give you the list of compatible lubricants for that specific vehicle. 

Alternatively, you can get in touch with us if you’re still not sure, or you have additional questions. Drop us a message via our contact form or give us a call. Our reps are standing by to help you.

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