KYB’s eco-friendly hydraulic fluid for shock absorbers

KYB’s eco-friendly hydraulic fluid for shock absorbers

KYB has unveiled a new environmentally friendly hydraulic fluid called SustainaLubTM.

Shock absorbers play an important role in stabilising the movement of a car by using hydraulic pressure and friction. Hydraulic oil supports this operation. Without this oil, the shock absorber cannot perform efficiently. Conventional hydraulic fluids are packed with years of research, know-how and advanced technology, but many of their main components are base oils derived from petroleum. The newly developed SustainaLubTM aims to be an environmentally friendly shock absorber hydraulic fluid that eliminates the environmental risks associated with petroleum. SustainaLubTM is a sustainable product that the company claims is both carbon neutral and recyclable. Full release to the market is planned for 2026.

As a global manufacturer of hydraulic equipment, KYB has long been involved in maintaining and improving the safety and comfort of automobiles. Using that experience, it’s striving to achieve environmental balance without compromising performance or reliability. Not only does SustainaLubTM reportedly improve manoeuvrability and stability by applying it to the various damping force valves that the company already offers, but it is also said to improve the feel of the product by applying friction control technology, for example KYB Prosmooth® shock absorbers. With Prosmooth®, internal shock absorber friction claims to be controlled by using newly developed materials for sliding parts, and variable hydraulic fluid additive adjustment technology. This product is said to deliver both a luxurious ride and superb cornering.

This new fluid contributes to carbon neutrality by switching from petroleum derived base oil to naturally derived base oil. It’s said it absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere during cultivation of the plants used for the base oil raw materials, also reducing CO2 emissions during transportation. It is biodegradable up to 60% or more according to the Eco Mark certification standard (OECD301). The base oil and additive formulation is seemingly recyclable, reducing environmental issues in the long term.

All new KYB products undergo reliability evaluation at the KYB Development Centre in Japan. The company says thorough performance and quality evaluation involves both bench tests and actual vehicle testing on a test track. This in-house design of a hydraulic oil recipe is allegedly a first for a manufacturer specialising in shock absorbers.

The KYB team participating in the All Japan Rally Championship JN-2 class introduced SustainaLubTM to its vehicles from round 6 onwards. The team reportedly analysed and verified the performance and durability in the harsh race environment. For further details about this, click here. In addition, the company says SustainaLubTM was trialled in the vehicle used in the LEXUS ROV (Recreational off-Highway Vehicle) Concept customer experience program. It was used for LEXUS’ first ROV equipped with a hydrogen engine. The data accumulated is also said to contribute to technology development for future practical applications, and work toward the realisation of a carbon-neutral society.

KYB hydraulic fluid 2

The ROV Concept features a Lexus first hydrogen powered engine, designed to offer a driving experience not possible with regular passenger cars. This was achieved through a compact body size and off-road capabilities. By using a hydrogen engine, the ROV aims to balance environmental consciousness and the thrill of feeling the heartbeat of an engine. ROV utilises low environmental impact technologies in its vehicle components thanks to the co-operation of partner companies like KYB that share the same vision.

Replacing petroleum based oil in KYB shock absorbers with this new hydraulic fluid will save up to 15.6 million litres of oil per year, according to the company.

KYB says it plans to ultimately apply this technology to all hydraulic products involved in realising a sustainable mobility society. As a manufacturer of hydraulic equipment, KYB has long been working to improve the ride comfort and handling stability of automobiles. Based on this experience, KYB will reportedly continue to pursue advances in performance and reliability while keeping environmental impact at the forefront of development.

For more information, click here.

Related posts