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1350 Auto Center Drive, Ontario, CA, 91761

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Dealership Info

Phone Numbers:Sales Hours:
  • Mon - Fri9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Sat9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Sun10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Service Hours:
  • Mon - Fri7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Sat8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
  • SunClosed
Parts Hours:
  • Mon - Fri8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Sat - SunClosed

Premium vs. Regular Gas: What’s the Difference?

man pumping gasoline fuel in car at gas station

Performance enthusiasts want to get everything they can out of their cars and SUVs, so it only makes sense that many compare premium vs. regular gas! Although it’s a good idea to use whatever fuel your owner’s manual recommends, knowing the difference between premium and regular gas can help you get a better sense of how your vehicle functions.

Comparing Premium vs. Regular Gasoline

Corona-area drivers probably won’t be surprised to learn that premium and regular gasoline are both refined versions of the same base product: crude oil. The main difference between premium and regular gas has to do with each fuel’s octane rating.

Premium gas has an octane level of 90 or higher. Regular gasoline generally has an octane rating of roughly 87. Higher octane ratings ensure a lower risk of engine knocking and help to keep your engine clean over time.

What is Engine Knocking?

Engine knocking is the industry’s term for inappropriate combustion, which may also be referred to as pre-ignition. Here’s what you should know:

  • Since regular unleaded gasoline ignites more easily–due to its lower octane rating–the risk of pre-ignition is higher.
  • Most engines have little trouble withstanding the occasional knock. Still, in vehicles manufactured with a high degree of precision, the effects can compound to damage your engine and limit performance over time.
  • In engines with a lower compression ratio, using more easily-combustible fuel is just fine. Engines with a higher compression ratio tend to work best with premium gasoline.

Should I Use Premium Gasoline in my BMW?

Some BMW vehicles require premium gasoline, while others do not. You can always check your owner’s manual or call us at (909) 351-3924 if you’d like to find out what’s appropriate for your model.

If you’re comparing premium vs. regular gas for a vehicle that doesn’t require it, keep the following tips in mind:

  • If your vehicle doesn’t require premium gasoline, you probably won’t see any immediate performance benefits by switching to a more expensive fuel.
  • Premium gasoline is more expensive than regular unleaded gasoline, but if your vehicle requires it, you won’t want to cut costs here. (Check out our BMW service specials instead!)
  • Premium gasoline won’t make your vehicle faster, and it probably won’t make your drives more efficient. But, it will keep your engine cleaner, leading to more dependable long-term performance.

Interested in saving even more on gas? Check out the BMW plug-in hybrid lineup today, and remember that your tire tread depth can have a significant impact on your performance.

Contact the BMW of Ontario Service Center Today

If you want to avoid engine damage and get more enjoyment out of your drives through Chino Hills and Rancho Cucamonga, comparing premium vs. regular gasoline is a great place to start. Getting familiar with your BMW warning lights and your recommended maintenance schedule is an excellent next step.

Now that you have a better sense of what your vehicle needs, check out some of our other service tips or contact our team for more information.

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Contact Us

(909) 351-3924

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1350 Auto Center Drive • Ontario, CA 91761

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Today's Hours:

Open Today! Sales: 9am-6pm

Open Today! Service: 8am-4pm

Parts: Closed

BMW of Ontario 34.0496769, -117.545101.