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Commemorative design revs up motor oil packaging

When motor sports vehicle manufacturer Polaris Industries, Inc., Medina, MN, and its motor oil manufacturer and packager Lubrication Technologies, Inc.

Pw 11118 Lube Tech

(Lube-Tech), Golden Valley, MN, decided to create special motor oil packaging to commemorate Polaris’ 50th anniversary, they turned to Berlin Packaging, a supplier of plastic, glass, and metal containers and closures, and Berlin’s design division, Studio One Eleven, for help.

Working in collaboration to develop design ideas, a team of representatives from Polaris, Lube-Tech, and Berlin’s Studio One Eleven opted for blow-molded, pearlescent gold, high-density polyethylene (HDPE), 32-oz containers shaped like ATVs (all-terrain vehicles) and snowmobiles, coinciding with Polaris’ release of special 50th anniversary limited-edition ATV and snowmobile models.

Blow molding of these uniquely shaped containers presented some special challenges, especially in terms of maintaining proper wall thickness at the corners and curves of the intricate container shapes. But Studio One Eleven’s designers and Berlin Packaging’s manufacturing engineers were able to work out the structural design and production procedures within weeks, meeting the Polaris deadline. The containers also feature embossing of the Polaris starburst logo and a proclamation of “50 Years” on the necks and bodies.

Packaging equipment and materials used for the project include E-Pak fillers, foil-sealed 38-mm closures supplied by Phoenix Closures, custom capping equipment from PSR Automation, custom four-color, pressure-sensitive labels from WS Packaging, and labelers from WS Packaging and Accraply.

Compared to its regular motor oil packaging, Lube-Tech and Polaris Industries estimate the cost of the special commemorative packages to be about 8-12% higher. But, they believe that the results were worth the cost, and consumers and package collectors have responded well to the packaging.

About 1ęşś Polaris dealers worldwide carry the products. The VES snowmobile-shaped bottle is $9.99/qt; the OW-40 ATV-shaped bottle $6.29/qt.

Lube-Tech spokesman Chris Heideman says, “Polaris is an industry leader in the innovation and design of ATVs and snowmobiles, and we wanted packages that would reflect that leading-edge reputation as well as celebrate their 50 years of success. These containers meet those objectives with a distinctive look that conveys speed, quality, and originality.” —Judy Rice

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