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Old 08-21-2003, 12:26 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: beaumont, texas
Posts: 226
87 300e transmission woes

My 87 300e tends to stick in gear at speeds above 40 mph. When is sticks the rpms go up and I have to give it more gas untill it shifts to the next gear. My tech told me over the phone that It just might need a filter and flud change. Can a fluid / filter change bring things back to normal or do you think I should start looking for a rebuilt one. If so what's the average price for a rebuilt one? Car has 149,000 miles on it.
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Old 08-21-2003, 12:51 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Ewa Beach, Hawaii
Posts: 333
I had a similar problem on my 86' 300E

I had a similar problem on my 86' 300E. Initially I tried to change the filter and ATF. That carried me for about 4-6 months.

Unfortunately I eventually had to have my transmission rebuilt. If I were you, I'd try to change the filter and ATF first (cost approx $40 DIY). I paid $1,700 to have my transmission rebuilt using original MB parts (that included R&R). I was going to get one directly from MB for $1,500 but the deposit was high and they would not give you the deposit back until after they determine your core can be rebuilt.

I wrote about this on this forum. Do a search and read my previous post. It has all the specific details (deposit, transmission cost, MB dealer cost, etc.)

Good luck,
1986 Gold 300E 4Dr automatic
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Old 08-21-2003, 03:42 PM
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Posts: 1,562
re: these symptoms/ condition

some indy MB techs have reccomended to avoid trans fluid and filter service and simply ensure proper fluid level...while waiting till the trans no longer operable for eventual rebuild

only true fix I'm aware of is to replace worn parts/ rebuild

hope this helps
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Old 08-21-2003, 04:59 PM
Posts: n/a
The opinion that one should not change the tranny fluid is a widely held one, I think perpetuated by tranny rebuild shops, I am a big believer in changing the fluid and filter every 12K miles.

It would not hurt to try changing the fluid/filter and perhaps the modulator valve, if so equipt. If that doesnt help. then

here is a link that has a tranny for your model for $1600.
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Old 08-22-2003, 02:33 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 23
I'm no expert 02 cents worth....I had a similar symptom recently, so if this helps, great.

My trans was flairing in the mornings for a minute until it warmed and then ran fine for the day. I think the shift problem you're experiencing can be described as 'tranny shift flair' (do a search here on flare or flair...can't remember the correct spelling).

In my case the ATF was low due to a leak out of the cooling hose from the radiator, and was a simple enough fix. As the ATF was down so low I followed a suggestion to replace the filter and re-fill with Mobil1 synth ATF. What I learned from the experience that could be useful for you:

1) the trans dipstick is NOT easy to read, as say for the engine oil. You might just find you're low on fluid, even if the stick says you're fine. (mine read fine and I actually had ONLY 25% of the required amt!!!!)
2) synthetic ATFluid is AMAZING on an older transmission. My shifts are smooth as silk since the change. I heard that the formulation is enough to fix your problem.
3) Try yourself or have someone increase the fluid pressure by adjusting your transmission modulator....that's what it's for. (again, do a search here, it's quite an easy task). The modulator has an adjustment screw that sets the internal fluid pressure of the tranny, which occasionally needs gradual increasing as the the miles pile up. Shift flair is often eliminated by this adjustment.

Good luck.

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