Is supermarket petrol worse?

We all know that in general supermarket fuel is cheaper per litre but does that mean it’s any worst that the regular stuff on sale at your local Shell or Esso garage? The truth is that there’s very little difference between the petrol sold in supermarkets and the fuel you get at other garages, but there is a difference in the quality.


Super unleaded

To answer the question let’s take a look at premium fuels. These are the high octane petrol on offer at the pump next to the standard unleaded fuel. With brand names like Shell V-Power and BP Ultimate you’ll start to get the idea about the purpose of those types of fuel – they’re sold for those of us with performance cars who want to get the most out of them. These fuels are not the same as other types of petrol but they can mix in your tank with standard fuels, even the petrol you get at supermarket pumps. This super unleaded petrol costs a little extra pence per litre but for the additional cash you get a better mix of additives and lubricants that help provide a high octane rate. The higher the octane, the better the fuel burns which means it’s more efficient. You’ll see slight economy and performance gains from using this type of fuel, although not all drivers will notice as it’s very much car dependant.

Supermarket fuels

The above information is a little grounding which will help you understand why fuels sold at non-supermarket garages are better for your car than the cheap stuff offered at Tesco, Morrison, Sainsbury’s and the like. The fuel that’s sold at the supermarket pump is provided by one of the major petroleum firms but it doesn’t get the same treatment it would undergo before it’s pumped out at a BP, Total, Shell or Esso petrol station. The sorts of additives that make super unleaded fuel are added in smaller quantities to standard fuels at the pump of one of the major fuel providers, and as we see from the super stuff, those additives and lubricants produce a higher octane and ultimately a better type of petrol.

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