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Discussion Starter #1
The FAQ is not working but I've given this a college try by searching with no luck. I'd like to order the correct transmission filter kit to replace the fluid. Short of removing the huge plastic belly pan (a great feature, btw) just to read the side of the tranny to see if its a GM or the German brand, is there any other identifying feature I can see in the confined space under there to verify?

Or perhaps I can use my VIN? I tried entering my VIN on RealOEM and when you get to the tranny filter a few times both trannies show up as if there's some uncertainty.

I went out and jacked up first one side, then the other with a powerful light hoping I could see the label, but no dice. Anyone have a suggestion, or a diagram where the identifying/supplier brand marks on the case are? I thought i read when I first came to the forum that the shape of the tranny pan is unique on each type and that's easy to see.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Wups, I take that back, I cannot see the tranny oil pan - found a photo of a sticker and ran out to the garage to realize I was mistaken. So the factory manual I have is for 2001 models and says all xis had the GM tranny. Did that continue?
 

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2004 330Ci 85k miles
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Have I got a thread for you!

Yes, your XI has the GM 5L40E.
 

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OK, fantastic. So the list shows I have the GM A5S390R? Or is your above number meant to be sure I'm aware mine is actually the 5L40E?

Thanks
 

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2004 330Ci 85k miles
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OK, fantastic. So the list shows I have the GM A5S390R? Or is your above number meant to be sure I'm aware mine is actually the 5L40E?

Thanks
A5S390R is BMW’s number, 5L40E is GM’s number. Same same...
 

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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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AFAIK The 2 tranny's are mostly the same. If you go to the better internal "hard part" sources, you run across many parts with footnotes for BMW, Opel, lumina etc.

Mostly the same with the usual variations throughout. Valve body gaskets can be multiple. Had to go through one for my neice for a no reverse.
 

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Wiki is certainly not the last word... but I’m 99% sure that is a typo in your BMW document (especially as the person misspelled GM’s “hydramatic”).

The two transmissions are very similar and primarily differ in one larger clutch pack in the 5L50 that allows it to handle 10% more torque than the 40. You could use the 40E manual to assemble the 50....

here is an old thread that explains it better than I can and tells you how to read the label:
 

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Here to serve y’all
2004 330Ci 85k miles
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11,097 Posts
Wiki is certainly not the last word... but I’m 99% sure that is a typo in your BMW document.

The two transmissions are very similar and primarily differ in one larger clutch pack in the 5L50 that allows it to handle 10% more torque than the 40. You could use the 40E manual to assemble the 50 except for the one clutch pack.

here is an old thread that explains it better and tells you how to read the label:
Ah, good to know. Thanks for the correction. (y)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the clarification and insight, gents. I write this stuff into my factory service manual as a old habit, so it's nice to get the accurate info.
 
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