Transmission change between 01 and 02?

Discussion in 'Drivetrain' started by samc, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. samc

    samc New Member

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    Being the compulsive person that I am, I compared the maintenance schedule for 01 and 02s (i have a late 01) and notice that for 01 Ford recommends changing auto transmission fluid and filter every 30k miles for the 4R70W; for 02, there is no recommendation for changes. Was there a transmission change that went unnoticed between 01 and 02, or did Ford find that Mercon V was essentially a lifetime fill? Any thoughts on this? My previous experience with imports and Chrysler products suggests that the Mercon V, an improvement over Mercon, played essentially the same role as Chrysler's change from ATF +3 to ATF +4; the +4 is a synthetic lifetime fill, the +3 was made from old horse urine or something and needed changing every afternoon.

    Anybody know for sure? Not that changing fluid and filter is ever a bad idea, just wondering what happened.

    Thanks for whatever help.
     
  2. Nightmare

    Nightmare Well-Known Member

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    Well it was a dodge so of course it needed changing on days that end in y......lol Any how, I beleive you should be good going 30,000-60,000 miles before changing the fluid...I recommend 36,000. Essentually, if you have a trans dipstick, it is not a lifetime fluid in my humble opinion.
     
  3. samc

    samc New Member

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    Actually, to paraphrase the old Phillips 66 Aircraft Oil slogan, the Chrysler had the oil that changed itself. "Lifetime" is determined by how fast it leaked out, which could be a very short time indeed. De-leaking a Chrysler minivan is an exercise for the patient who also happen to be very good with RTV. And speaking of changes, the previous generation Honda vans were supposed to have the ATF changed every 15k, after which the transmission frequently needed rebuilding. Now there's a bad design.

    Agree that there is no such thing as a "lifetime" fill, that's why they sell filter and gasket kits (and for those who believe there is such a thing, why rebuilds exist), but I find it interesting that Ford recommended 30k changes for '01 and made no recommendations at all for '02. I believe that Ford dropped the converter drain about then, too, which leads me to believe they didn't plan for changes, but I'd kind of like to know as an intellectual exercise so I can ignore the "no change" with my usual casual air and go ahead and change it anyway. Were the transmission assembly part numbers changed significantly between the two years? That would be a clue.

    What this is about is that I just acquired a new-to-me '01 convertible and am going through it tweaking, changing, lubing, greasing or de-greasing as appropriate, and generally getting comfortable with it. I already did a drop-and-fill, so it's purely an exercise in mental masturbation. Nice car, too. I like it. A lot.