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http://www.bmworlando.com/pages/services/tech/faq/syn-oil.htm#syn

Ran across this article. sorry if it's a :repost: but I don't recall running across it before. Basically, there are Group III and Group IV categories of oil that are considered "synthetic." Group III is just dino oil with added refinement. Group IV is man engineered oil. I consider Group IV the "true" synthetic and what I expected to be buying. Castrol switched from Group IV to Group III in 1997 and now, apparently other companies are following suit.

Anyone have a list of which oils are Group III and which are Group IV?
 

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There I was, Sicily, 1918..
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I looked at a whole bunch at PepBoys (Valvoline, Castrol, Mobil, Pennzoil, etc.). There's a rating in the back label called "GF" -- I believe this is the Group rating (I'd like this to be confirmed, though). All of them exceeded GF-3 ratings; none met or exceeded GF-4.

Can someone with a bottle of Redline or Amsoil check this and see? The article is very interesting, but it doesn't inform anyone on how to check for true synthetic oils (if there are any left).
 

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There was a great thread on this awhile ago. Search and you can get all the info. I believe that Castrol has switched back to full synthetic.

Tim
 

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tim330i said:
There was a great thread on this awhile ago. Search and you can get all the info. I believe that Castrol has switched back to full synthetic.

Tim
Does this apply to the M3 oil? What is that particular Castrol's rating?
 

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The fact that Castrol is not a true synthetic is old news. For those of you that read Car and Driver magazine, they had a story about this very subject about 2 or 3 years ago. Mobil sued Castrol for advertising a non-synthetic as a synthetic. Simple enough, eh? Well Mobil lost the lawsuit, enabling any company to sell non-synthetic oils as synthethic. Rumor, I repeat, rumor has is that the new Super Syn blend of Mobil1 is no longer a true synthetic either. Why should it be? The lawyers and courts said it was okay to mislead the public.

This is why I use Redline Oil - a true synthetic.
 

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Redline states that it meets/exceeds GF-4.
 

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Where can I find REDLINE oil for my BMW?
 

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trancenerd said:
So, what does BMW use for oil change then?
Most likely Castrol!
 

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I am fairly sure that Mobil 1's 0W40 is a Group IV oil.

Red Line and Royal Purple's oils are classified in a Group as their formulation chemistry is a secret (if i'm mistaken, please feel free to correct me).

If you want the better oils for the e46 (non-M of course), you may want to stick with M1's 0W40, or German Castrol 0W30 (Red Lettering not the yellow one).

And yes, BMW uses Castrol oil, even though M1's 0W40 is BMW Approved (not many oils are).
 

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what oil is everyone using and what weight?
 

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Business first; I use Redline 10w-30. I would not use the 10w-30 in a cold, snowy climate though (even though Redline says it's okay). In cold climates I'd use a 5w-30.

Continuing the Redline topic, I use MTL in my 5-speed manual transmission rather than the D4-ATF. MTL is ideal for warmer climates and I think makes for superior shifts compared to factory fill and D4-ATF. And as Redline says, it offers much better gear protection.

Lastly, hello SLOW323Ci. I hope that Cal Poly degree is paying off. Cal Poly is a great school. SLO is doing just fine, downtown is just as gorgeous as ever. Supposed to be in the 70's and crystal clear on Thanksgiving Day. You have to love it. Hills are beginning to turn green, the vineyards starting to turn red. Beautiful.
 

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The manual for my 2003 330Ci says to use either a 5w-30 or a 15w-40. A 10w-30 falls between these two ranges if you consider the "5w" and the "15w".

As I said in my previous post, I'd stick with a 5w-30 in cold weather climates. A 15w-40 is attractive in some ways, though it's not a commonly available viscosity.

I use a 10w-30 because my car is always garaged and it seldom gets below 45 degrees where we live, even on the coldest night (on these "cold" nights my garage stays at least 65 degrees). In other words, cold starts are not an issue with me. Plus, it seldom gets over 80 degrees here even on the hottest day, making a 15w-40 unncessary.

Redline doesn't make a 0w-40, and if they did I *might* consider using it. However, the wider the viscosity spread the more viscosity improvers that must be used. Compared to a 0w-40, a 10w-30 is superior in this respect.

For those interested in Redline, Turner sells it for $7.95/qt. I never plan ahead and pay $9.95/qt here in SLO. Gotta stop doing that.
 

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sullyz said:
Redline states that it meets/exceeds GF-4.
allow me to correct myself..... "GL-4"
 

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I have an M3, my oil selection is limited to BMW's $12 liter Castrol TWS.
 

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$12?? I just paid $8.25 at Stevens Creek on Friday.
 
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