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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Sun, Jan-29-2017, 05:14:09 PM   #11
TboneM3
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

Just use what it tells you to in the manual and enjoy driving your car.

Edit: I didn't see the part about you having a tranny sticker other an our green one, so maybe it is specc'd for an ATF, in which case the thicker than MTF LT2 MTL of Redline, or others 10+ cSt @ 100, was wayyyyy too thick.

Your tranny might like a synchromesh like RP or maybe BMW LT3 which is even thinner than LT2 (gas mileage).

I'd do more research on your label and go from there, but if you're thinking of a gl4 fluid that's as light as an atf really, with an amazing cold pour point of like -60 iirc, then Pentosin MTF2 is your stuff.

The Redline stuff you put in should be great if your getrag really calls for an ATF.
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Last edited by TboneM3; Sun, Jan-29-2017 at 09:22:07 PM.
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Old Sun, Jan-29-2017, 05:24:02 PM   #12
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

Pentossin 75W-80 MTF2 in the E46 M3 race car and it shifts flawlessly.

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Old Sun, Jan-29-2017, 11:02:37 PM   #13
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

OE Pentosin.
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 03:55:42 AM   #14
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

MTL might just be the right viscosity for my tranny as it has ltw flywheel on it. I do have spare BMW tranny fluids so if I don't like the redline, I will simply flush it and replace.
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 04:50:49 AM   #15
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

What does a ltw flywheel have to do with how to lubricate the synchros and gears?
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 07:27:59 AM   #16
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

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Originally Posted by TboneM3 View Post
What does a ltw flywheel have to do with how to lubricate the synchros and gears?
It has to do with rattle. As for synchros, it only happens briefly on shifts... so I do not know if it would be met with catastrophic failure with slightly thicker oil.
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 08:48:16 AM   #17
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

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My understanding is that MTL oils are thicker and shear less; also means that cold lubrication is not as effective as the lighter ATFs.

I'm wondering why the tranny had an orange ATF sticker on it in the first place; guess it's either periodic changing of ATFs or life time MT-LT2?

It's a different topic but while I am fine following the gear oil standards by bmw, I'd rather not use OEM shell or castrol 5w-40 specified for my engine; it shears so fast at the track! No less than 5w-40~10w-40 group IV/V oil is preferred in this case, so deviation isn't always bad.


Now I'm not a chemist but I do major in engineering so who knows; I might be making the future M!
On the other hand, one of my club's alumni works as a Toyota engineer and he doesn't care what oil as long as it lubricates the system; so the only anal people may be ones from oil companies or customers like me.
Well of course it doesn't matter what oil you use if everything is 'properly lubed,' but how can you know that without extensive testing of the fluids/disassembly of the mechanism in question? I'm sticking with oe pentosin (I've got a jb flywheel, trans has 170k miles on it and really no issues to speak of. I do usually double clutch into second gear until the car warms up a bit)

If you only drive your car 5 miles at a time and constantly see cold weather (ie never gets warmed up) maybe you'd want something else....
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 03:09:01 PM   #18
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

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If you only drive your car 5 miles at a time and constantly see cold weather (ie never gets warmed up) maybe you'd want something else....
Kyoto is rarely cold usually the lowest is 2-3C (35.6-37.4F) and 50F+ during the day around Jan-Feb. I am concerned with oil shearing though as some of you pointed out may not lubricate properly when up to the temp at the track and gymkhana (D4 ATF=70w-80 equivalent, MTL=75w-80 equivalent.)
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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 03:51:45 PM   #19
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

Don't focus on the 70, 75, 85 ratings, they don't tell the real story. Look at the actual viscosity rating at 100. A run of the mill 75wt will be heavier than the pentosin 75w80.
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Sportline 8S 18x8.5/9.5" PSS 245/275 Goodridge SS lines Pioneer DEH-80PRS Eclipse PA5422 CDT HD-6 + WS-100i CDT EX-530 8" Kicker

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Old Mon, Jan-30-2017, 04:39:49 PM   #20
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Default Re: What tranny fluid do you use?

Redline D4 ATF is Vis @ 100C - 7.5 cSt, and is what they spec for the E46 M3. It's also used in the PS system, making it even more convenient. My Getrag 5-speed daily has no issues even at single digit Fahrenheit temperatures, and the track 6-speed works just fine. Keep in mind this is not a lifetime fluid.
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Discussing What tranny fluid do you use? in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)