Pennzoil History

Since the turn of the century, through every significant milepost in automotive history, Pennzoil has been producing the world’s finest motor oils—and a remarkable history as well.

It was 1889. The world’s first billion-barrel oil field was discovered in Bradford, Pennsylvania, and South Penn was born. One of John D. Rockefeller’s original companies under Standard Oil, South Penn developed Bradford field and by 1908, around the time Henry Ford’s Model T hit the road, began producing their flagship line of motor oils. They named the oils “Penn’s Oil” in 1913 and soon thereafter renamed them Pennzoil, with the distinctive image of the Liberty Bell to reinforce their Pennsylvania heritage.

The company’s passion for engines made Pennzoil a household name. That same passion led to an illustrious record on the nation’s raceways. In the early 1930s, Pennzoil sponsored popular Indy 500 driver Russell Snowberger. Throughout the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, Pennzoil-lubricated machines dominated top fuel, pro stock, funny car, IndyCar and other forms of racing. Over the past decade, Pennzoil has played a major role in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition, first with Roush Racing and more recently Richard Childress Racing. RCR’s Kevin Harvick won the 2007 Daytona 500 with Pennzoil racing oil in his engine. In 2011, Pennzoil teamed up with Penske Racing in both NASCAR and the IZOD® IndyCar Series.

From humble beginnings, Pennzoil has grown to become the motor oil more people trust than any other oil.* And today, with best-in-class products like Pennzoil Ultra, Pennzoil continues to lead the industry. Remember, it’s not just oil. It’s Pennzoil.

*Based on a survey of licensed drivers conducted by a leading research firm. January 2006–December 2010. ©2012 SOPUS Products. All rights reserved.