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Gearbox oil? TAF-X No more? - Gearchange/Gearbox/Clutch - The Lotus Forums Jump to content


Gearbox oil? TAF-X No more?


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Morning all,

I'm about to replace the gearbox oil again following my unsticking of the synchro to make sure any contaminants are caught, but I've been looking at Opie Oils and noticed that TAF-X is no longer listed and the replacement has this statement:

Please Note: Castrol Syntrans Transaxle 75W-90 does not meet specification API GL-5. Castrol TAF-X 75w-90 met API GL-5, therefore Castrol Syntrans Transaxle is NOT a direct replacement. If you are unsure if this new product meets you requirements consult your handbook or contact our team.

From here:

http://www.opieoils....sion-fluid.aspx

Any thoughts?

Clearly I can still get TAF-X from elsewhere for now...

Edited by Rich H

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

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Or just buy the TAF-X.

The last time I asked about this Bibs told me he could sell me some. I presume from the shop right here on the forum.

Um nope. Just went and looked and Bibs only has the Castrol Syntrans oil you mention above now as well.

I'm sure Bibs will say something sometime.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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http://www.lotusespritworld.com/EGuides/ETechnical/oil.html

I guess you've seen this, but if not,,,,,,,,,,,,,, I'm using Castrol Syntrax 75W/90

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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Cut and pasted from LEW

Capacity: 3.0 litre

The introduction of the

Renault Transmission on the Esprit to replace the Citroen Transaxle (Type C35) was a major exercise. The project started using the Renault specified Elf TRX lubricant. Following some durability testing it was found that this lubricant was not suitable for the Esprit application. Following discussions between Renault Engineering and Lotus it was decided to revise the lubrication to a specification that Renault were evaluating.

This product was produced by Mobil and was designated as Mobil 630M. The gearbox testing (including things like cold shift quality and operating temperature control) continued using Mobil 630M. The vehicle testing was to a programme that met both Renault & Lotus durability requirements using both test circuits (Nardo & Millbrook) and European Roads (Mainly Germany & Switzerland).Many Vehicles & Gearboxes were subjected to the durability cycle and complete Gearbox strip & inspection was carried out by both Renault & Lotus Engineers.

Only after the Renault identified durability had been completed was the Gearbox approval given provided that the Gearboxes were filled with Mobil 630M. At this time the Gearbox was identified as the Renault UN1 - 16. The Mobil lubricant was specified for a number of years until we were advised that it was being phased out and would eventually disappear from the market place. Some Mobil 630 lubricants still exist but unless it is identified as 630M it is different to that approved by Lotus.

During the life of the Esprit the vehicle specification was updated several times. This led to changes to the Transmission (to cope with the increased Engine Torque) developed by Renault for the Esprit application (High Torque known as UN1 - 026). During the development of the High Torque Transmission different lubricants were tested to ensure reliability with the increased vehicle performance. The most successful lubricant for all round performance and durability was found to be Castrol TAF - X. This lubricant was specified for all Lotus Esprit Renault Transmission applications

Many lubricants may offer benefits of some sort (shift quality, cold operation, noise etc.) but the Castrol has been extensively tested by Lotus and found to be our preferred lubricant. All the comments on the net about Lotus making the lubricant choice on things like cost, company connections etc. are incorrect. The lubricant specification was made on Technical Merit only. The Castrol TAF - X met all of our requirements for our increased engine performance (including the V 8).

The Gearbox identification is currently Renault UN1 - 027 for the Esprit V8 and Renault UN1- 028 for the Esprit GT3. Castrol TAF - X is available from Lotus under the Part No. A082F6552S. This statement reinforces the words of Dave Simkin of Lotus Cars USA following an enquiry on lubrication specification.

Lotus Cars Ltd

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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Not sure what you're saying Roger.

You're using Syntrans, but are you backing that up with an article that states that you should be using TAF-X?

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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http://www.castrol.com/castrol/multipleproductsection.do?categoryId=8000016&contentId=7000384

I run Castrol Syntrax 75W/90, and have done for 4 years, and the car gets driven, hard.

I do have to wait for the gearbox to get up to temprature before I can do clutch-less gear changes, but that is not unexpected.

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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One of the first things I did after purchasing my Esprit was to stock up on the TAF-X (ordered [for a pretty penny] from overseas, as it's not available here in the states), and I guard my supply like the King's gold. While any good quality gear lube ought to be "adequate" for a time, only the TAF-X has the official Lotus "seal of approval" for overall long term wear issues. Obviously they can't have tested every single product on the planet, but the TAF-X is a "known quantity" and thus provides me with peace of mind.

Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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My problem is that the TAF-X is approved but no longer available, I would like to know I'm not storing up problems.

I also know that some gearbox oils attack bronze resulting in long term damage to the box, what if that takes 5 years?

Is there an e-mail address for the factory? I can't phone them from here.

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Im using the syntrax which is gl4 spec. The taf-x I couldnt get a hold of, and I went to the castrol supplier we use for our trucks. Theyre called race lubricants, which is a part of the castrol retail group.i never drive my esprit cold, although the gearbox will obviouslt be cold even wheb the engine is up to temp initially. I get no issues with gear selection. It would be nice to compare though from a driving point of view the difference between the two fluids..if any noticable difference is present. The syntrax was the fluid recomended by race technical as the closest to the taf-x you could get. There are other gl5 spec fluids out there, but that doesnt mean theyre as good

Oh, additionally when I was looking earlier in the year there was some places on ebay with some stock...worth another look

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I can supply TAF-X still but you'll need to buy it a dozen bottles at a time at around £15/l or I'll stock up if there's expected sales, I've not room to hold lots of stock of anything.

Lotus are testing the Syntrans currently. It's 99.9% the same as TAF-X so will probably become the factory recommendation but watch this space for official confirmation.

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

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I fully expect that the syntrans will be approved but it is different to TAF-X

Fortunately I found 3 litres int he shed so should be OK for now

(Also my recent foray into the gearbox and subsequent seal changes means it's topped leaking!)

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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I always carry 16 -20 litres of TAF-X on the shelf as its the sort of stuff you can't always get just when you need it.

If anyone is really stuck for the odd litre or two pm me and i will try and help you out.

Dave

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  • 3 months later...

I can supply TAF-X still but you'll need to buy it a dozen bottles at a time at around £15/l or I'll stock up if there's expected sales, I've not room to hold lots of stock of anything.

Lotus are testing the Syntrans currently. It's 99.9% the same as TAF-X so will probably become the factory recommendation but watch this space for official confirmation.

Hi, anymore news on this ? I wanted to get some to top up my gearbox but as has been said Opie oils state Syntrans is not GL-5 so is not same spec as Lotus recommend. The do however list a Millers oil which does meet GL-5 & I can pick this up from my local motor factors ?

Regards, Phil.

Regards, Phil.

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Hi Derek,

Thanks, I saw your post but wondered what peoples thoughts on the Millers oil that Opie Oils list for the Esprit ?

It's 75w/90 but meets GL-5 so it it's the same spec as TAF-X where Syntax is only GL-4.

I can get Millers from local motor factors whereas I'd need to order Castrol & pay for delivery ?

Anyone used Millers ?

Phil.

P.S. This is also only for topping up if needed.

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That's all well and good, Phil. But how does it taste on cereal?sofa.gif

Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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Millers TRX 75W-90 is semi-synthetic whilst the TAF-X is fully synthetic. There is a fully synthetic version of theTRX.

The two TRX oils have a much lower viscosity index than the TAF-X which means they are not as capable of maintaining their viscosity over a range of temperatures.

Edited by sailorbob
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