As more vehicles come with synthetic motor oils from the factory, oil change
interval recommendations have begun to increase. It looks like 7,500 miles is the new adapted standard. The synthetic oils experience less thermal breakdown and evaporative loss over time compared with conventional oil, which allows for less frequent oil services. Some vehicles have even forgone the traditional dipstick in favor of sensors that determine oil level and adjust the service interval in real time based on your driving habits. However, the decrease in oil changes also means a decrease in service business for dealerships
. Dealers rightfully fear a reduction in customer retention and are unsure of the long run effect. Many have found solutions in prepaid maintenance contracts and complete service package deals such as combining tire rotation with your oil service. Also, despite their fears, dealerships won't completely lose out on regular customers as there will always be those reluctant to change their 5,000-mile oil change habit. Plus, there are many people who know the abuse they put their engine through, or don't trust electronic sensors and like to ride on the safe side with frequent oil changes.
[Source: Automotive News]