The oil and additive industry is challenged to meet future automotive legislations aimed at reducing worldwide CO2 emissions levels. The most efficient solution used to date has been to decrease oil viscosity leading to the introduction of new SAE grades. However this solution may soon reach its limit due to potential issues related to wear with lower engine oil viscosities. In this paper, an innovative solution is proposed that combines the use of a new tailor-made polyalkylene glycol (PAG) with specific anti-wear additives. Valvetrain wear measurements using radionuclide technique demonstrates the robustness of this solution. The wear performance was also confirmed in Sequence IVA test. An extensive tribological evaluation (film formation, wear and tribofilm surface analysis) of the interactions between the base oil and the anti-wear additives lead us to propose an underlying mechanism that can explain this performance benefit.