Suzuki Canada: Choosing the Right Engine Oil

Suzuki SV650
Image: Suzuki SV650

It’s important to recognize that not all oils are appropriate for your Suzuki engine. Suzuki’s Ecstar oils are designed for your Suzuki and adhere to the JASO T 903 Standard.

Choosing the right motorcycle 4-stroke engine oil can be complex as there is a wide variety available to purchase, and at times, approval ratings can be vague. But, before parting with your hard-earned cash, it is essential to understand the benefits of choosing the right engine oil for your motorcycle.

To ensure that the right oil is used, motorcycle manufacturers usually require the oil to meet JASO standards. Primarily, the JASO T 903 standard helps consumers to select four-cycle oils correctly. It also protects against field problems resulting from the choice and use of inappropriate oils.

What is JASO T 903?

JASO T 903 is a standard for motorcycle 4-stroke engine oil. It was established by the Japan Automobile Standards Organization (JASO) in 1998.

Other 4-stroke engine oil standards were established prior to this standard. These include:

  • API (American Petroleum Institute)
  • ILSAC (International Lubricant Standardization and Approval Committee)
  • ACEA (European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association).

But, these three standards are primarily intended to be applied to automobile oil, where the oil performance and quality requirements have tended toward lower viscosity and lower friction to achieve better fuel economy. So, the JASO T 903 was created as a “motorcycle-specific” oil standard.

JASO Oil Performance Classification

There are two JASO oil classifications (MA and MB) included in the original standard established in 1998. These standards are based on the friction characteristic of the oil. Only MA oil is specified for all Suzuki motorcycle and ATV models.


In addition to the general properties of a 4-stroke engine oil, a JASO oil must pass the standard for the following two properties:

  • A specified minimum friction characteristic that is vital in preventing clutch slippage
  • A specified maximum amount of viscosity degradation caused by extreme high shear forces between transmission gears.

Oil Container Markings

It is the responsibility of oil product suppliers to conduct self-tests according to the JASO standard and submit test reports to JASO.

The engine oil classification reported to JASO must be indicated on oil containers in accordance with the specified format shown to the right.

Although the 2006 revisions divided the MA grade into MA1 and MA2, suppliers can choose whether to indicate MA or the sub-classification MA1 or MA2.


For more information on the JSAO T 903 Standard, click here.

Suzuki Canada recommends the following products which are JASO certified to care for and maintain your engine:


All Suzuki products are designed to work best when maintained with Genuine Suzuki oil products.

  • Marine Semi-Syn 10W40 Oil
  • R5000 10W40 Mineral Engine Oil
  • R5000 20W50 Mineral Engine Oil
  • R9000 10W40 Full Synthetic Engine Oil