Difference on ATV Oil vs Motorcycle Oil

When you ride ATVs on rent or just get your friend’s one most of the time the fuel tank will have enough to get you the adventure ride. But do you know what type of oil you should fill in an ATV to keep the ATV healthy and perfectly running, it’s alright if you don’t as many people are not aware of what oil goes into the tank of an All-Terrain Vehicle.

The majority of four-stroke ATVs do run on gasoline. The gasoline should be of minimum grade 87 or higher. In case you are unaware of the variant of ATV then putting an 89 graded gasoline is the ideal option to choose. If you luckily find the same 87 grade with ethanol-free characteristics then it will work as well.

The factor which also dominates the oil used in ATVs is the model being a 2-stroke or a 4-stroke model. The four-stroke model doesn’t make a fuss and happily runs in the 87-grade gasoline, but for the two-stroke model, the oil issue isn’t that simple.

In two-stroke, you need to mix the specific oil made for two-stroke with gasoline to keep the ATV function properly. Experts also explain that the Oil compartment and use are much different for ATVs than other vehicles.

ATVs are made to run at higher RPM and the vehicle controls a much hotter environment in the oil compartments. Due to the low oil volume, the same sump might get used by the clutch, transmission, and engine.

This just suggests that the ATV oil has more complicated tasks to accomplish. For better analysis, you need to know the Difference between ATV Oil vs Motorcycle Oil.

A Branded Oil Is Being Poured Into An Atv.
A branded Oil is being poured into an ATV.


The High-grade non-ethanol fuel

In the ATV owners world, there remains a common debate on whether the common 87 graded gasoline is the only fuel that should be considered for all ATVs or not. The owners believing in the 87 would raise the fact that as the fuel doesn’t go too warm it will have minimal risk of combusting through the piston of the vehicle. The other obvious argument basis is the price of other high-grade specialized oils.

But the ATV people who don’t mind the few extra bucks prefer nothing over the non-ethanol gasoline with a grade around 91. But they have their reasons for choosing the high graded one, the common belief being that the costly one would definitely be better for the ATV’s performance and strength.

They both are not wrong for their respective ATVs, this is because the owners have experienced what works fine and smooth for their vehicle.

If your ATV is running great with the 87-grade gasoline then it’s all fireworks for you, no need to try out something else. But if you are buying the non-ethanol one since day one then it’s no harm in putting the 87-grade gasoline once or twice in a row.

If your ATV is not very comfortable with the oil then it will tell through small signs, which you need to understand. The vehicle might throw some knocks. Now here are some symptoms to help you understand if the present fuel you are using is not the best for your ATV:

  • The petcock shows leaks from the carburetor even if the petcock is fixed properly.
  • Often failures to rev and vehicles acting like fuel are absent even if it’s full.
  • If an extension of the ignition choke is the only way to start your quad bike.
  • The engine might often stumble then just die out when no throttle is being inputted.
  • If the vehicle thrust and performance seem to be in loss of power.
A Professional Atv Rider Driving In A Racing Manner.
A professional ATV rider driving in a racing manner.


Types of Oil for ATV

In the case of ATVs, you may have a few options of oil to choose from but in several other vehicles, there are no options. But with options, it often leads to confusion due to incorrect knowledge or lack of it. It has been proven that some kinds of oils do work best for a specific kind of ATV engine.

But it will help you better understand and realize the oiling mechanism when you know about the variants of oil as follows:

  • Synthetic motor oil- As the name suggests synthetic oil is made by humans through several chemical compounds. The motor oil is made in such a way that it can function in various critical conditions. They are easier to obtain from other orthodox oils and would be less costly.
  • Semi-synthetic oil- This type of oil is not fully synthetic and is more of a mixture of naturally obtained oils with synthetic oil. The semi-synthetic oil has natural oil for the majority of the percentage. Around 70% is a natural oil and the rest 30% is synthetic oil in combination.
  • Natural oil- The most common kind of oil being used for decades now for driving vehicles around are the natural obtained Oils. There are so many variants of natural oil and all of them are used for different fueling purposes. Even after so many discoveries by humans for other renewable fuel resources, natural oils remain around unbeatable and dominant.

 Experts suggest that in ATV vehicles the body has a lot of high-grade plastic parts therefore choosing an oil that will be able to complement the high temperature of the engine. While experimenting if you fill your ATV tank with the incorrect oil then the functionality of the vehicle will be greatly affected. Troubling issues like a failure in bearings, stuck piston rings, overheating, wet clutch use, and poor response of throttle. For vehicles like 4-stroke ATV the premium oil that will make your ATV run smooth and perfect is the 10w40 oil.

But for the two-stroke ones, there is not much space for experimentation, you should use the recommended grade gasoline only. If the ATV you ride has features like a wet clutch then your ATV has a very specific kind of oil that you can only use and you shouldn’t use other oils for the ATV’s proper functioning.

Different Types Of Atv Dedicated Oil From Varying Brands
Different types of ATV dedicated oil from varying brands

Motor Oil Differences

Vehicles are made suitable for one kind of oil, based on its purpose. The oil which keeps the dedicated function of the vehicle intact is considered the ideal fuel. In the case of motorcycles as well there are ideal oil types that suit them best.

If you are raising the question- Difference in ATV Oil vs Motorcycle Oil then you are on the right path in getting to know the truth of oil distinctions. The answer to your query can be stated as that yes both the oil much similar in various characteristics yet it is unwise to use the same for both without knowing the criteria behind.

In terms of oil engineering, the type of Oil that is best suited for ATVs comes under the name of JASO MA. But the motorcycle oil suitability is best found in technical oil termed JASO MA2 or MB. In a special case, you can use the MB in ATV.

For most other ATVs you should dedicatedly use the JASO MA category oils. In comparison, there isn’t a lot of differences between the two categories of oil but there remain some small distinctions which are given below:

  • The JOSA MA2– This type of oil is dedicatedly used for motorcycles only. Especially for the motorcycles which have a catalytic converter present in them. A catalytic converter is used to diminish the toxic gases and other particles of pollutants released from the engine’s exhaust structure. The JOSA MA2 category of oil is specific to this type of motorcycle because of the presence of phosphorous and zinc.
  • The JOSA MA– The most interesting property of this category of oils is the ability to provide more friction. This oil type is purposefully used in vehicles having a wet clutch feature. In wet clutches, a lubricant is present between the friction plates which is absent in dry clutch vehicles. Due to this property, it resists the wet clutch from slipping and provides more stability to the vehicle.
  • The JOSA MB oil– The ideal vehicles in which this category of oil should be used are the ones having an automatic transmission. The JOSA MB oil helps in the transition of gear and lets the gears operate smoothly. They also are reputed to be economic and save fuel. Several ATVs lack the feature of automatic transmission and thus you need to be extra careful before using your ATV.

You might already get the answer to the -Difference on ATV Oil vs Motorcycle Oil. Buying and using oils which declare to be specifically made for your ATV is a great option to always choose.

This type of oil from common brands will be easier for you to find whenever you need to refill the ATV tank. The most common and popular dedicated ATV fuels are mentioned below:

  • YamaLube OEM 4 stroke.
  • Valvoline for ATV and UTV.
  • Lucas 10720 oil.
  • Honda GN4 motoroil.


It is very much needed by your vehicle that you only put the type of oil in the tank which is best suited. The vehicles like ATV being built for off-road performance need to be in their best shape most of the time. Thus using the oil unsuitable in use can severely affect your ATV’s performance and even cause troublesome issues in the vehicle that would cost you more money. Buying the oil depending on the vehicle model and from the brand which sells dedicated products in the market specifying all details is necessary.

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