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Okay... I changed the MTF in my 330Ci a week ago, and although it's shifting smoother, it's not great. It's high mileage, so I don't expect the world. However, there's a few odd things to note and I was hoping someone could shed light on the issue...

First, there should be about 1.2 quarts of fluid in the gearbox as described in the many DIYs on this site and others. Where the drain and fill plugs were located, it seemed black and oily, as though it had been leaking a little. I wiped it all down and pulled out the fill then drain plugs and MAYBE a cup of very nasty fluid came out (don't blame me... I bought this from a lazy former owner!). So I was hoping that the new fluid would make a major difference.

Secondly, I used Redline D4 ATF, as recommended by many here. However, although it drained only that few ounces of fluid (yes, it was warm when I did it), I noticed later that there was a cap under the hood that read "ATF". Um... it's a 5-speed. And um... the 'dipstick' on the cap reads full. That can't possibly be the same fluid I changed underneath with the fill plug on the side of the case (where the retarded "lifetime fluid" sticker was).

What's the difference between these two? Even the owner's manual that points out all the maintenance areas under the hood shows the "ATF" cap, but it's a greyed image, as though they don't want you to touch it or know what it is.

I'm confused... if there's another fluid (like, another section of the transmission) where I could replace nasty old fluid, I'm all about it!

~ Rich
 

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The ATF cap under the hood is power steering fluid and it should be changed with D4. The tranny really should have MTL. Especially if it has been abused like yours has! ATF in a manual is for fairies that whine and cry when tranny warmup takes a few miles in the colder weather. Your manual needs MTL!
 
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