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Castrol Limited
  • CC Wakefield & Co.
  • Castrol Limited
    (1960–1966, 2000–present)
  • Burmah-Castrol
Founded9 March 1899; 124 years ago (1899-03-09)
FounderCharles Wakefield[1]
FateAcquired by Burmah Oil in 1966, Burmah-Castrol merged to BP in 2000, Castrol remained as a brand
HeadquartersCastrol Technology Centre, Pangbourne, Berkshire, UK
BP Lubricants, Wayne, New Jersey
Castrol Industrial North America, Naperville, IL
Key people
Mandhir Singh
(CEO, 2016–present)

Castrol Limited is a British oil company that markets industrial and automotive lubricants, offering a wide range of oil, greases and similar products for most lubrication applications. The company originally named CC Wakefield, the name Castrol was originally just the brand name for CC Wakefield's motor oils, but the company eventually changed its name to Castrol when the product name became better-known than the original company name.[1]

Since 2000, Castrol Limited has been a subsidiary of BP, which acquired the company for $4.73 billion.[2]


Charles Wakefield, founder

The "Wakefield Oil Company" was founded by Charles Wakefield in 1899. Wakefield had previously left a job at Vacuum Oil to start a new business in London, selling lubricants for trains and heavy machinery. The company launched its first lubricant in 1906. The new business was established in Cheapside in London to commercialise lubricants for trains and other heavy machinery. Eight former Vacuum Oil employees joined Wakefield in his new company.

In early 20th. century, Wakefield Co. developed lubricants especially suited for automobiles and aeroplanes.[3] The brand "Castrol" originated after researchers added measured amounts of castor oil (a vegetable oil derived from castor beans) to their lubricant formulations.[1] By 1960, the name of the motor oil had eclipsed the company's name itself so "CC Wakefield & Company" became "Castrol Limited".[4] In 1966, Castrol was acquired by company Burmah Oil, which was renamed "Burmah-Castrol". Burmah-Castrol was purchased by London-based multinational BP (then, "BP Amoco plc") in 2000.[5]

At the time of purchase, Burmah-Castrol had a turnover of nearly £3 billion with operating profits of £284 million. The company also had 18,000 employees worldwide, with operations in 55 countries. Respectively, BP Amoco had 80,400 employees worldwide and revenues of more than £63 billion.[6]

Previous Castrol logo, used from 2006 until 2023

While Burmah's operations folded into the group, Castrol has remained as a subsidiary of BP.

On 28 February 2023, Castrol unveiled the new logo for the first time in 17 years, aimed at better reflecting its unique positioning in the market and the opportunities it sees in meeting the changing needs of customers.[7]



Castrol sponsored NASCAR Pinty's Series (formerly CASCAR) Dodge Charger

The brand has been involved in Formula One for many years, supplying to a number of teams, including McLaren (1979–1980 and 2017–2020), Williams (1997–2005), Team Lotus (1992–1993), Brabham (1983–1984), Jaguar (2000–2004), Renault/Alpine (2017–present) and Walter Wolf Racing.[8]

Castrol has sponsored the Ford World Rally Team and M-Sport in the World Rally Championship since 2003, and the Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT factory team from 2016, to 2019. It has also sponsored Volkswagen Motorsport activities in the Dakar Rally and later the World Rally Championship since 2005. Audi Sport's activities in rallying and touring car racing have been sponsored by Castrol, as well as its Le Mans Prototypes program since 2011.[9] BMW Motorsport was sponsored by Castrol from 1999 to 2014.

Toyota Motorsport had Castrol sponsorship in the World Rally Championship from 1993 to 1999, and Hyundai Motorsport did so from 2000 to 2002. Also, the Honda factory team at the World Touring Car Championship had Castrol sponsorship from 2012 to 2020.[10] In the All-Japan GT Championship, the 1997 championship-winning TOM'S Toyota Supra[11] (famous from the Gran Turismo series by Polyphony Digital) and later the Mugen Honda NSX had Castrol sponsorships.

In North America, Castrol has been an active sponsor of NHRA drag racing. Castrol sponsored John Force Racing under the GTX brand from 1987 until the end of the 2014 season. Also, the All American Racers had Castrol sponsorship in the CART World Series from 1996 to 1999. In 2014, Castrol sponsored former Indy 500-winning IndyCar team Bryan Herta Autosport, with English rookie Jack Hawksworth behind the wheel.

Castrol is the name sponsor of Castrol Raceway, a multi-track oval, drag, and motocross racing facility in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.[12] Castrol is the sponsor of D. J. Kennington in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series and NASCAR Cup Series.[13]

In Australia, Castrol has a long history with the Supercars category, and between 1993 and 2005, Castrol was the title sponsor of Perkins Engineering. It also sponsored Longhurst Racing between 1995 and 1999, Ford Performance Racing between 2007 and 2009, and Paul Morris Motorsport in 2010.[14] In conjunction with a multi-year series sponsorship, between 2014 - 2016 several race events acquired Castrol naming rights including the Castrol Edge Townsville 500 and the Castrol Gold Coast 600.[15] Castrol was the title sponsor of Team Bray, owned by Australian drag car legend, Victor Bray for 17 years.

Castrol was the main sponsor of the Castrol International Rally in Canberra for 11 years between 1976 and 1986. The same was true for an International Rally held in South Africa, ending annually in neighbouring Swaziland. It was the most prestigious event on the South African rally calendar at the time, until Castrol ended its sponsorship of this event. Later only some competitors' cars were carrying the bright green and red colours of Castrol sponsorship in national rally events, notably the S.A. Toyota dealer team.

In 2019, Castrol extended their sponsorship activities by re-forming a partnership with Jaguar, this time supporting them in Formula E[16] and also NASCAR Cup Series giants Roush Fenway Racing-Ford since 2020 season.

Castrol also briefly made an appearance in 1993 with Nissan in the British Touring Car Championship,[17][18] where Keith O'Dor managed to win the 9th round of the season at Silverstone with his teammate Win Percy taking 2nd.[19]

American football[edit]

Castrol advertising has been a part of telecasts of the National Football League for years. In 2011, Castrol's Edge brand became the official motor oil sponsor for the league, along with Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson endorsing the product; it has since been renewed until the 2017 season.[20] The endorsement deal with Peterson was terminated on 16 September 2014, due to ongoing child abuse allegations.[21]


The Castrol Cricket Index for a team is a dynamic indicator of the overall performance of the cricket team. It is calculated by taking into consideration the batting momentum, the bowling efficiency, the performance of the teams in the quick start overs and the extreme performance overs and many other factors. Castrol Cricket also ranks cricketers based on their overall performance.[22] India centric initiatives being undertaken like Castrol World Cup ka Hero was created during the 2011 Cricket World Cup.[23][24]

Rugby Union[edit]

In 2011, Castrol signed a four-year sponsorship deal for the Australian national rugby union team and as the naming rights sponsor of The Rugby Championship.[25][26]


From 1995 until 1997, Castrol were also the shirt sponsors of English Football League side Swindon Town.


Illuminated Castrol ad in Hamburg, 2007
Castrol booth at an exhibition in Long Biên, Hanoi, 2016

Castrol products are still marketed under the red, white and green colour scheme that dates from the launch of Castrol motor oil in 1909. Advertisements for Castrol oil historically featured the slogan "Castrol – liquid engineering". This was more recently refreshed and reintroduced as "It's more than just oil. It's liquid engineering."[27][28]

For many years, the opening notes of the second Nachtmusik movement of Mahler's Seventh Symphony were used as the signature theme of Castrol TV commercials.[29]

Wakefield vehicles advertised the company and Castrol on their sides; models of them were made by Dinky Toys, and in later times became sought-after collectors' items.[30] One example from 1934 to 1935, in very good to excellent condition, was estimated to fetch £1,000-£1,500 at auction in 2016.[31]


  1. ^ a b c "History of Castrol". BP. BP. Archived from the original on 5 June 2014. Retrieved 15 June 2014. Early in the new century, Wakefield took a personal interest in two sporty new motorised contraptions – the automobile and the aeroplane. The company started developing lubricants especially for these new engines, which needed oils that were runny enough to work from cold at start-up and thick enough to keep working at very high temperatures. [...] Wakefield researchers found that adding a measure of castor oil, a vegetable oil made from castor beans, did the trick nicely. They called the new product 'Castrol.'
  2. ^ Bahree, Bhushan (14 March 2000). "BP Amoco Agrees to Acquire Burmah Castrol for $4.73 Billion". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 26 November 2022.
  3. ^ THE HISTORY OF CASTROL on Classic Oils website
  4. ^ History on Castrol NZ
  5. ^ "BP to buy U.K.'s Castrol for $4.7 billion". 14 March 2000. Retrieved 1 June 2020.
  6. ^ BP buys Burmah Castrol on BBC News, 14 March 2000
  7. ^ "Castrol unveils refreshed brand to reflect the changing needs of customers". 28 February 2023.
  8. ^ "The history of Castrol in F1". 27 January 2005. Archived from the original on 8 September 2010. Retrieved 22 December 2010.
  10. ^ "Racing cars - HONDA CIVIC WTCC". JAS Motorsport. Retrieved 26 March 2023.
  11. ^ "The Legend Of The Castrol TOM's Supra |". Retrieved 26 March 2023.
  12. ^ "Castrol Raceway official website". 27 January 2011. Archived from the original on 1 February 2011. Retrieved 2 February 2011.
  13. ^ "Midweek Racing Roundup: Canadian Kennington gets a crack at the Daytona 500; Hamilton will be the judge if Bottas stays (or not) at Mercedes; Liberty Media officially owns F1 so the Americanization will begin - The Star". 18 January 2017. Archived from the original on 29 September 2017. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  14. ^ "Murphy's Abu Dhabi Date Clash Quandary". Speedcafe. 21 December 2009. Archived from the original on 11 September 2014.
  15. ^ "V8 Supercars | Sports | Home". Archived from the original on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 22 September 2015.
  17. ^ "1993 Cars". Retrieved 26 March 2023.
  18. ^ "1993 British Touring Car Championship". Super Touring Register. Retrieved 26 March 2023.
  19. ^ "1993 BTCC - round 9". Retrieved 9 April 2023.
  20. ^ Lefton, Terry (14 April 2014). "Castrol renews deals with NFL, Vikings' Peterson". Sports Business Journal. Archived from the original on 16 April 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2014.
  21. ^ Gregory Wallace and Chris Isidore (16 September 2014). "Adrian Peterson loses big Castrol endorsement deal". CNN. Archived from the original on 17 September 2014. Retrieved 17 September 2014.
  22. ^ "Don't bring up fatigue issue: Anil Kumble". Mid-Day. 29 May 2009. Archived from the original on 14 July 2011.
  23. ^ "Castrol plans to pump up sales with cricket connect". Business Line. 2 November 2011. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011.
  24. ^ "Brett Lee announces Ashok Kumar as the first Castrol World cup ka Hero". Punjab Newsline. 14 February 2011. Archived from the original on 15 July 2011.
  25. ^ "Castrol to fuel Australia home tests". Archived from the original on 16 August 2012.
  26. ^ "Proud sponsors of the Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship". Archived from the original on 22 August 2012.
  27. ^ "Val Lube Car Care Center - Services". Archived from the original on 8 March 2010. Retrieved 4 February 2013.
  28. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  29. ^ "Castrol launches competition to update ad soundtrack". Archived from the original on 10 January 2013. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  30. ^ "Rare Dinky toy collection fetches £150k at Devon auction". BBC News. 15 June 2016. Archived from the original on 15 June 2016.
  31. ^ "A Pre-War Dinky Toys 28m 'Wakefield's Castrol' Delivery Van, type 1, "Meccano Dinky Toys" cast to". 9 March 2016. Archived from the original on 26 May 2016. Retrieved 15 June 2016.

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