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E36 General discussion and technical help for (E36) 1992-1999 3 series cars. 318, 323, 325, 328.

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Unread 04-10-2009, 01:04 PM   #1

Name: chaz110789
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Your Ride: 97 328i
Type of transmission fluid 97 328i

I have been having the hardest time trying to find out what type of transmission fluid my car takes. I looked under the car and there is no side plate to tell me what type of transmission it is. However, it is a GM transmission and I was told that all e36 that have GM transmissions take Dexron 3. But then I found another site that says all e36 transmissions 97 and up take the specialty fluid. I know that putting the wrong fluid in your transmission can do some pretty serious damage so I want to be as cautious as possible. Anyone have a 97 328i and has changed the transmission fluid? Thanks in advance.
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Unread 04-11-2009, 04:06 AM   #2
David Mc
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Name: David Mc
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Your Ride: 1998 e36 328i
If there is a green coloured plastic cap over the filler plug, the transmission uses Esso LT71 141 fluid (which BMW refer to as the "lifetime fluid"). It is distributed by Exxon and the best way to buy it is from the wholesaler in a 20 litre (4 gallon) drum. Dexron is red in colour whereas the Esso product is very pale green/straw coloured (i.e. pale green when new but turns straw coloured with xtended use). My 328i coupe was built in December 1997 and uses the Esso product.
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