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Jim Glickenhaus: "Your choice of oil is the best preventive maintenance you can do"

08.04.2021

After seeing the benefits of running Motul in his Hypercar project, Jim Glickenhaus is now treating the other cars in his garage to the full range of Motul lubricants. But these are no ordinary cars. One in particular, the Enzo-based Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina, is a bespoke one-off commissioned by Jim and delivered in 2003. When it comes to cars this special and rare, he isn’t cutting corners when it comes to oil.

Jim Glickenhaus: "Your choice of oil is the best preventive maintenance you can do"

Jim, your prized Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina is now running Motul. Why did you make the switch?

Yes. The thing about our Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina is it's a 2003 Ferrari Enzo underlying it. A lot of the technology from 2003 is tremendously different than today. Another very serious issue for all classic cars, and for even something from 2003 like the P4/5, is that the gasolines of today are a lot different. They have much more ethanol in them, and that causes blow-by and contamination of the oil. It also causes more coking or coating of the valves with carbon deposits, because the gasoline is not quite as high octane, and doesn't burn off. In the case of gasoline, we have to live with the fluids we can buy. We do have additives that we can add to it to try and reduce the coking on the valves. But when it comes to oil, this car was one of the first to use a new blend of oil, a 10W60 racing oil. Now there are other 10W60s, including from Motul, but back then the choice of brands was limited.

Jim, your prized Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina is now running Motul. Why did you make the switch?

What are some of the advantages of this 10W60 blend?

The one thing that we found out with 10W60 is that it works well in both stop-and-go traffic, the summer heat and on the track. Some of the older oils had ingredients in them that worked better in the older engines. And so, before making the switch, we had to research very carefully what that oil was. But now that we’ve done that research, we're really looking forward to using it.

What are some of the advantages of this 10W60 blend?

I presume taking the decision to switch oil brands for such a prized collection of cars is not one to be taken lightly?

No, it really isn't. But now that we are racing with Motul, and the fact we had actually been using the classic oil in some of our classic cars and seen good results, we feel confident that it will be good. The one thing we like about Motul is they give us a lot of information. Like we can honestly tell them what we're using, and they can tell us what they recommend. And so far, we've had great success with it. You know, the problem with oil for the average person, is that the damage that gets done is hidden and happens over time. So, if you have a classic car that does not get the lubrication it needs to keep it in perfect condition, you may not realise it for 10 or 15 years. But when you tear that motor down in 15 years, you'll realise the problems you've had. And, you know, oil is probably the least expensive, preventive maintenance you can do. Having the proper oil in the car and changing it often is crucial. One of the hardest things for classic cars is they sit around a lot, they get cold, they get short-shifted. People start them, don't warm them up completely, then shut them down, and that's really terrible for them.

I presume taking the decision to switch oil brands for such a prized collection of cars is not one to be taken lightly?

The last time we talked, you mentioned some interesting excursions planned this year for the Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina.

Yes, this year it will be at Pebble Beach. It will be featured in the Pininfarina exhibit, which is very exciting as it's one of the newest Pininfarina cars that will be there. We really look forward to that because that'll be an interesting but tough class.

The last time we talked, you mentioned some interesting excursions planned this year for the Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina.

You’re renowned for your car collection, but what’s perhaps special about your cars Jim is that they aren’t garage queens. Your cars are driven.

That’s the thing, we drive our cars. Between testing, track and road, the Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina has covered almost 20,000 miles (that’s a lot for a very rare Ferrari). We just did a big rebuild of the motor, because over the last few years a lot of coking had affected the valves. We had to take them apart and clean them. Some of the electronic components were also a little bit dodgy. So now that we have it back together, we want to make sure we use the right oil to keep it going.

© Copyright pictures: James Glickenhaus & Pininfarina

© Copyright video: Gene Sanchez

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