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2004 X3 3.0iA, which transmission fluid?

Discussion in 'E83 X3 (2004-2010)' started by 298095, Nov 21, 2008.

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    First things first- VIN WC33980 produced 06/2004, 102k miles (all highway, no towing/hauling)

    Talked to a trusted tech last week trying to figure out what transmission fluid to put in the X3...BMW's information says to check the the transmission oil pan to see what fluid is used, either Texaco ETL - 7045 or Dexron III. Per BMW's information there is indeed a sticker on the bottom of the transmission...but all it says is that 83220024359 should be used for replacement fluid. The sticker is right smack in the middle of the bottom of the pan, so I don't think there is another sticker anywhere else. I found a GM tag on the side of the housing, but that offered no assistance.

    I've confirmed that the transmission is a GM transmission, A5S 390R I think. From reading online I believe the GM transmissions are pretty much all compatible with Dex III type fluid, but if this is the case then it doesn't make sense that the transmissions could contain either Dex III or the Texaco ETL7045. It also appears that this transmission is also used in some E46 models, and I found this writeup online http://www.scribd.com/doc/4598252/Automatic-Transmission which describes the 83220024359 on my sticker as Texaco ETL 8072B. This creates even more confusion because the BMW documentation says it's either Texaco ETL-7045 or Dex III, but nothing is mentioned bout 8072B.

    I've e-mailed the tech to see if he can make any more headway with this information, but no luck yet. I'm going to try to call the dealer as well...I don't know if they'll help me figure this out or not, but this is one of the most frustrating damn things I've ever tried to chase down. Curse BMW for this confusion...

    I expect that this question will start to pop up more and more as the X3's begin to accumulate miles. I'm hellbent on changing all the fluids now that we're over 100k. We love the vehicle and would like to keep it for several more years.

    I'm also leaning towards the OEM filter/gasket kit for the car. I realize it might be overpriced, but I'd like to know that the filter is of top notch quality.

    Any assistance is much appreciated!


    Jeron guest

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    There is a lot of info on the web. My guess is the 8072B is just like the ESSO fluid, high quality Synthetic ATF.

    I would contact Amsoil. They are pretty good about getting back to you about the compatibility of their fluids with other brand fluids. I cant find it but I have a white paper from Amsoil stating that their ATF is compatible with ESSO and several other fluids.


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