BP Vs. Shell Gas – Which One to Go for?

As a car owner, you may be loyal to some utility brands, which is usually good for your vehicle’s health. You will likely find yourself in the BP vs. Shell debate when talking about gas and oil brands.

BP and Shell are among the largest companies that deal in oil and gas and take pride in having an extensive and loyal customer base. So, which is the best vehicle consumables partner between the two? We will compare BP and Shell to give our take on this polarizing topic.

BP Gas Overview

bp gas

BP gas is a product of BP p.l.c, a British company formerly The British Petroleum Company p.l.c. The company has been all about transitions, which began with its conception in 1909, a collective effort of William Knox D’Arcy and Charles Greenway.

BP’s foundation came to be with the discovery of oil in southwest Persia, present-day Iran, in 1908. A year later, the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (APOC) came to be as a subsidiary of the Burmah Oil Company. APOC became the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC) in 1935, then the British Petroleum Company in 1954.

Presently, BP is part of Big Oil, a group of the best oil and petroleum companies. In 2022, the company had revenue of over $241 billion, with total assets of more than $288 billion, making it one of the most prominent companies in the world.

The company has a global presence, with the United States being its primary market, representing an investment of over $135 billion since 2005. It also owns Amoco, a fuel station brand it acquired following a 1998 merger.

Is BP good gas? BP is renowned for its quality products that bring the best out of your vehicle. BP introduced its patented Invigorate formula in 2016, a detergent additive in all gasoline grades.

For the best service when using BP, it is advisable to join the BPme Rewards program. You become a BPme by downloading a mobile app of the same name that will help you find fuel stations near you, track receipts and earn various rewards.

Shell Gas Overview

Shell Gas

Shell plc, a British oil and gas company, owns Shell Gas. Priding itself as a core member of Big Oil, Shell has had a firm market grip since its founding in 1907.

The founding of two rival companies: the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company in 1890 and the Shell Transport and Trading Company in 1897, planted seeds of what would become Shell plc. The two companies would merge in 1907, a union prompted by the need to compete with Standard Oil at a global level.

The Royal Dutch Petroleum Company had a 60% stock in the new company and took charge of manufacturing. The Shell company, with a 40% stock ownership, was responsible for the transport and storage of the products.

Shell had a rollercoaster ride during the first half of the 20th century, especially during the First World War. It was the main fuel supplier of the British Forces during the war but suffered damage due to the destruction of property.

The 21st century witnessed Shell’s acquisition of other oil companies, notably Pennzoil-Quaker State, in 2002. This merger brought brands like Jiffy Lube and Rain-X under its name.

Are Shell and BP the same? Shell and BP are not the same company. However, the two companies had a joint venture after they decided to merge their marketing operations in the United Kingdom in 1932. The move came due to the harsh economic conditions of the time and birthed Shell-Mex and BP Ltd. Royal Dutch and BP went their separate ways in 1976, signaling the end of Shell-Mex and BP Ltd.

Shell deals in high-grade fuel, which is available in various grades. It is also present in around 99 countries worldwide. Shell plc had roughly $381 billion in revenue in 2022 and a total asset value of $443 billion, making it one of the biggest firms globally.

BP Vs. Shell Differences

BP and Shell have similarities, such as being British firms dealing in oil and gas and their Big Oil membership. They also have a strong brand identity, having been mainstays in the car consumable scene for over a century.

Let us discuss the differences between these two giant multinationals based on various attributes to help you pick a suitable partner.

bp vs shell gas

1. Operational Efficiency

A company’s operational efficiency gives a hint of their services, product standards and other crucial metrics. Besides helping you pick a suitable car consumables partner, operational efficiency is also crucial if you want to invest in the firm.

Shell and BP are stable entities, with several proved reserves. BP has the most reserves, at around 17.8 billion barrels of oil equivalent at the end of 2016, which is 25% more than Shell’s.

Moreover, BP has a reserve replacement ratio of 100%, an average it maintained over a period of three years since 2018. On the other hand, Shell had a reserve replacement ratio of 53 in 2018, and maintained an average of around 96% in a three-year period.

When it comes to operational efficiency, BP is the obvious leader.   

2. Product Quality

You should always pick a fuel company that deals with high-quality fuel for your vehicle’s best performance and longevity. Some motorists may claim that their car runs better on Shell gas, while others will swear by BP gas.

BP and Shell offer high-grade fuel, a reason why they are market leaders. Both companies invest in research to meet industry-set standards and customer satisfaction.

Regarding quality, you must consider the additives, mainly detergent, that helps clean the fuel lines. Shell and BP fuels have additives that qualify them for Top Tier™ certification. As of this discussion, BP lost its Top Tier tag, while Shell retains its certification; thus, it’s the victor in the quality comparison.

Exxon vs. BP gas quality, how do they compare? Exxon is also a market leader and does not compromise on product and industry standards. Exxon still has its Top Tier tag, giving it an edge over BP fuel.

3. Product Catalog

Shell and BP have impressively large product catalogs, primarily fuel and lubricants. Our focus is on the former, with both companies having different grades of gas and diesel.

The Shell E15 Regular and BP Regular E15 are these companies’ regular gas, with an octane rating of 88, signaling a higher ethanol content than premium gas. Regular gas is the most used in many countries due to its affordability.

Both Shell and BP regular gasoline contain detergents for engine health and optimum performance and meet Top Tier ™ standards, though BP may have lost its recognition. BP regular relies on its proprietary Invigorate formula that will clean the fuel line and engine. You use the E15 fuels on vehicles and motorcycles manufactured from 2001.

BP has a midgrade gasoline, the BP Silver, with an octane rating of 89. Its equivalent is Shell’s Standard gasoline, which targets improved fuel economy, superb performance, and all-around protection.

On the higher end of the gasoline grade spectrum, we have the Shell V-Power Nitro+ premium gasoline going head-to-head with BP’s Amoco Ultimate. These are E10 or premium gasoline and guarantee the best performance, courtesy of their improved formulations.

Shell and BP’s inventories contain diesel and flex-fuel, also known as E85 gasoline. The catalog debate ends in a tie, as both brands bring their A-game, with three gasoline grades, diesel, and flex-fuel.

4. Availability

Typically, people opt for a brand that is easily accessible. BP and Shell are global brands with a wide reach, though Shell’s is broader. There are around 44000 Shell-branded service stations worldwide, in more than 99 countries, with over 14000 locations in the United States.

On the other hand, BP has roughly 18700 locations globally, with around a third being in the United States. Worldwide, it is present in approximately 80 countries. Based on the presented values, we see that Shell is more accessible than its counterpart, which explains its bigger customer base.

5. Price

The BP vs. Shell price review affirms the two company’s products to be pricier than most of their counterparts. While costly, you will surely get high-standard fuel that will uplift your engine’s efficiency. Nevertheless, it is hard to determine the cheapest between the two brands due to price fluctuations, which also depend on location.

BP gasoline is cheaper in some areas than Shell’s, and vice versa for diesel or other fuel grades. Despite the steep price tags, these companies have programs that guarantee amazing offers and price cuts.

BP has the BPme Reward program, whereas Shell rolls with its Fuel Rewards scheme. Additionally, they both have a Grocery Rewards arrangement. You need to sign up for the rewards programs and download an app for convenience.

6. Venture Into Electrical Vehicle Charging

Electricity is the energy of the present and future, which is evident from the dawn of electric and hybrid vehicles. Shell and BP ventured into the growing vehicle charging scene and are now among the best EV charging station companies.

BP has over 22000 EV charging stations worldwide, aiming at over 100000 by 2030. Its charging stations are present in the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany, China, Australia, and New Zealand, among many others.

Shell has more charging stations than BP, at over 34000, and it seeks to increase this figure to meet the growing demand. Most of Shell’s EV charging stations in the US are along the west coast.

7. Ethanol Levels

Despite ethanol in gas being beneficial in boosting engine performance, it may contribute to the formation of harmful pollutants. The government has policies to regulate ethanol composition, which Shell and BP abide by. They meet the recommended 15% ethanol composition in gasoline and 85% in flex fuel.

8. Environmental Conservation Measures

Shell and BP have been at the receiving end of various complaints about environmental negligence, with Shell taking the lion’s share of such cases. The companies have implemented several measures to combat the degradation brought about by their oil exploration activities.

Shell has the Powering Progress strategy in place for a smooth and quick transition of its businesses to yield zero emissions. This strategy targets four main goals: generating shareholder value, powering lives, achieving zero emissions, and respecting nature.

BP has a solid policy to manage its environmental footprint. The policy entails:

  • Compliance with applicable environmental and company laws to conserve the environment
  • Exhaustively improve its environmental management systems
  • Raise awareness of issues affecting the environment
  • Monitor and report progress on conservation measures
  • Involving the board in the management of operational environmental risks

So far, BP is doing an excellent job of meeting its environmental conservation obligations. Shell is also doing something for the surroundings, though the pace is slower.

Customer Reviews

Customer reviews on vehicle utilities will help you choose a befitting brand. BP vs. Shell Reddit threads touch on several topics, such as price, availability, and quality. For instance, this response on a vehicle discussion forum lauds the performance of the Shell V Power.

BP’s reviews are mostly positive, like this Quora contribution that highlights the efficiency of BP Ultimate. Before settling on a particular brand, it is advisable to visit reputable auto forums, where you may get crucial information that may change your mind.

Is BP Better Than Shell?

Your go-to fuel brand reflects your driving and car care preferences. The BP vs. Shell discussion reveals plenty about the two companies, such as their lengthy and robust presence in the auto service scene and focus on product quality.

Whether to go for Shell or BP is a matter of choice, relying on accessibility, price, and personal preference. Either way, you are sure of the best quality fuel that will do justice to your engine. You should join the company’s reward programs to enjoy amazing discounts and other offers.


Hi there, I am R. Hasan Tito, a mechanic, and owner of this website. My friend and I created this website to share our knowledge, expertise, and experience with our fellow mechanics' community and car users. I am a specialist and certified automotive mechanic (Both Heavy Commercial and Private Cars). I worked as a Mechanic and Mechanic Supervisor for over fifteen years at Global Rebound Automotive companies - Toyota, TATA, BMW, Nissan, TVs, and Others. Now, I enjoy my new role of leading a team of automotive experts (in their respective fields) and publish new content on a regular basis on my website and social media.

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