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Old 08-20-2002, 04:17 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: S.F Bay Area, CA
Posts: 14
Question Synthetic ATF in 190E transmission?

I may purchase a '90 190E (see earlier post on: Reliability of '90 190E?) that has 134K miles on it. As I 'd like to keep the A/T operating for as long as possible, I'm considering using a synthetic ATF in the transmission. Anyone have experience with this or info on it? I'm also trying to decide on A/C system servicing: keep the R-12 or convert to R-134a. Automotive A/C only gets used occasionally during several (3-5) months out of the year in my area.
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Old 08-20-2002, 11:50 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Vernon, CT
Posts: 1,845
After I bought my TD, I put Mobil 1 ATF in. Then about 5 weeks later I get a copy of the Factory approved service products, and NOT ONE of the 12 ATFs listed was synthetic. Not even regular Mobil ATF was listed. Now, I haven't gone out and dumped the Mobil 1 out of my tranny, but it definetly made me think. Only some of the newest MB cars require synthetic ATF, and it's MB specific.
1994 MB E320 Coupe (199,500 mi)
1992 MB 190E 2.6 (173,000 mi)
1983 Porsche 911SC (148,000 mi)
2004 Volvo V70 2.5T (198,000 mi)
PCA member
MBCA member
President of CT/Westchester Section
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Old 08-21-2002, 08:47 AM
Jim's500E's Avatar
Large Member
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Manchester, Connecticut
Posts: 1,325
I ran Redline synth oils in the tranny and rear dif from 80K to 140K miles in my 92' 190E fact the rear dif 'howl' went away after the new oil. I run the same in my 500E problems also. Give it a try.

1992 500E
2007 CLK63
2003 Audi RS6
2001 Audi allroad
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Old 08-21-2002, 09:42 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Canada
Posts: 298
I have Mobil-1 synthetic ATF in my 400E as well, no problem at all. I regularly check underneath for leak, there is no leak from the transmission.

I have been using Mobil-1 synthetic ATF in all my cars, it's also in the transfercase and P/S pump in my 4X4, I am very happy with it.
99 BMW 540i 6-speed 110K Km
03 SAAB 9-5 wagon 80K Km
92 400E (Sold) 245K km
Still missing the days with the Benz, it kept me busy.
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Old 08-21-2002, 12:32 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: England
Posts: 1,841
Be careful, sometimes change is the *worst* thing you can do for a cars longevity! Speak to an automatic specialist if you want a definitive answer, but I would suggest continuing with whatever it has been using for most of its life up until now.

2.5-16v 1990 90,000m Astral Silver
2.0E 8v 1986 107,000m Black 2nd owner
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Old 08-21-2002, 03:14 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Fairfax County, Virginia
Posts: 856
It is just lubricant ... if it meets the standards, then it will probably be fine. I have switched every car I have ever owned to synthetic engine oil, auto transmission, manual transmission, and rear end differential ....never an issue (not a huge data set, but consistent with what I have heard from many, many others).

Pretty human nature story here ... folks that have switched recommend doing so (cause they did it) and folks that haven't switched don't recommend it (cause they haven't done it).

Course, I also am over-generalizing the heck out of the topic.

Seriously, use the best lubes you can afford - they are and will increasingly be, synthetics.
George Stephenson
1991 350 SDL (200K and she ain't bent, yet)
former 2002 E320 4Matic Wagon - good car
former 1985 300 CD - great car
former 1981 300 TD - good car
former 1972 280 SEL - not so good car
a couple of those diesel Rabbits ...40-45 mpg
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