Is it good to use higher octane fuel in a non-turbocharged car?

Using higher octane fuel in a non-turbocharged engine generally does not provide significant benefits and is not necessary unless specifically recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. Octane rating represents a fuel’s resistance to detonation, or knocking, which is a premature combustion of the fuel-air mixture in the engine.

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Higher-octane fuel is primarily beneficial for engines with higher compression ratios, such as those found in turbocharged or high-performance engines. These engines generate more heat and pressure, and the higher-octane fuel helps prevent knocking. In such engines, using lower-octane fuel than recommended can lead to knocking and potentially cause engine damage.

However, for non-turbocharged engines such as naturally aspirated engines with regular compression ratios, using fuel with higher octane ratings generally does not provide any significant advantages. It won’t improve engine performance, fuel efficiency, or longevity. The engine’s design and fuel management system are typically optimized for the regular octane rating specified by the manufacturer.

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Using higher-octane fuel in a non-turbo engine might result in wasted money since higher octane fuel is often more expensive. It’s generally recommended to follow the vehicle manufacturer’s guidelines and use the fuel octane rating specified in the owner’s manual or fuel filler cap.

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