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Thread: E46 M3 Oil

  1. #1
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    E46 M3 Oil

    Has any one used any other oil than Castrol 10w60 in an E46 M3? What was the result?

  2. #2
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    Do a search! Someone posts this question once a week, and there are hundreds of responses out there. Most of them add up to: if you do not want to buy expensive oil, you should not have bought an expensive car, use the TWS.

  3. #3
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    10W-60 is specifically used to meet the required lubrication properties of the engine at 8000 rpm. Use of a substandard lesser oil will net you a few HP but with the result of a destroyed engine.
    Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by hundreds of engineers that get paid thousands of dollars for something you bought at Pep Boys because your buddy who doesn't have a job told you it was 'better'?!?

  4. #4
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    Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by hundreds of engineers that get paid thousands of dollars for something you bought at Pep Boys because your buddy who doesn't have a job told you it was 'better'?!?

  5. #5
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    Not Good

    Quote Originally Posted by msurles View Post
    Has any one used any other oil than Castrol 10w60 in an E46 M3? What was the result?
    I will reluctantly and with some embarrassment admit to trying to save a buck on an oil change. I purchased the oil filter at the dealer and then used Castrol Syntec 5W50 instead of the approved (and as we all know expensive) 10W60.

    In a relatively short time (say within 2,000 miles) the whole tone of the engine changed. I began hearing what I believe was a change in the variable timing to the extent the exhaust note was not the smooth purr that I was used to. It sounded like there was a timing problem that was preventing the engine from running as smooth, and as powerfully, as it should. There was a noticeable lack of low-end power, meaning anything below about 2,800 rpm.

    Being concerned that something was wrong, but not yet suspecting the oil, I took it to the dealer and had it checked. They hooked it up and ran a full diagnostic and "all checks indicated the engine is within all parameters".

    At that point the light bulb went off that "what if it's the oil". So I scheduled an oil change with the dealer and had it done.

    The engine is back to running perfectly. Smooth purring exhaust and loads of low-end torque.

    That's my personal experience, and I know there are other forum members who have had better experience and consistently run other than 10W60 oil. But it's not something I'll ever do again.

    OldBMVGuy

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldBMVGuy View Post
    . . . loads of low-end torque. . . .
    I don't think "loads of low-end torque" accurately describes the S54. I feel it is rather lacking in low-end torque; that's why its redline is 8,000 RPM.
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  7. #7
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    Don't save a buck. Use the 10w60.

  8. #8
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    Assuming you're not buying plain-Jane 10w40 and getting some other synthetic, what does any of this debate really save per oil change? $40? Even if you drive 15K miles a year and do 7500 oil changes, you're voiding any BMW support and possibly trashing your engine for all of $80 a year on a $55K car.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ohnoes View Post
    I don't think "loads of low-end torque" accurately describes the S54. I feel it is rather lacking in low-end torque; that's why its redline is 8,000 RPM.
    Depends on the variation of S54 ... my S54 has loads more low end torque than my previous generation one did, but I pay a penalty in high-RPM zing.
    Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by hundreds of engineers that get paid thousands of dollars for something you bought at Pep Boys because your buddy who doesn't have a job told you it was 'better'?!?

  10. #10
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    I've been wanting to use Royal Purple next time I change the oil. Anyone know anything about this claim of theirs?

    http://www.hiperfuels.com/catalog.as...93110&detail=1

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeftcoastM3 View Post
    I've been wanting to use Royal Purple next time I change the oil. Anyone know anything about this claim of theirs?

    http://www.hiperfuels.com/catalog.as...93110&detail=1
    you can find these at walmart when they're not sold out

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JetBlackE46 View Post
    you can find these at walmart when they're not sold out
    should be ok to use though I assume?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeftcoastM3 View Post
    should be ok to use though I assume?
    It's your car, but you're going to risk voiding any BMW support in order to save around $2.50 x 6 = $15/oil change or maybe $30-$45 a year???

    Really?

    If I recall correctly, 5w30 is "acceptable" if 10w60 is not available and oil *must* be added. It's not considered interchangeable on a regular basis as their product blurb claims.
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  14. #14
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    Do people not understand that an 8200 RPM redline on a street car is insane? To use anything but the TWS from Castrol is nuts. People spend thousands on rims and CF pieces, but want to save $50 a year on cheap-o oil. I don't get it. If you care enough to change the oil yourself, you obviously give a damn about your car--TREAT IT RIGHT!

  15. #15
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    10W60 only FTW!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by msurles View Post
    Has any one used any other oil than Castrol 10w60 in an E46 M3? What was the result?
    Hmmm, lets see. I've raced Porsche Turbo's and now racing BMW's, since 1992. The Porsche's turbo spun at 125,000 rpm and I've beat the hell out of the BMW race car and never used anything but 5w 50w or 10w 40. I've never had an oil related failure. Let common sense be your guide and change oil & filter often, no matter what oil you use.
    Dan Jones

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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by dj10 View Post
    Hmmm, lets see. I've raced Porsche Turbo's and now racing BMW's, since 1992. The Porsche's turbo spun at 125,000 rpm and I've beat the hell out of the BMW race car and never used anything but 5w 50w or 10w 40. I've never had an oil related failure. Let common sense be your guide and change oil & filter often, no matter what oil you use.
    The oil that is lubricating the s54 has to deal with many more lubrication areas than just a spinning shaft on a turbo.
    Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by hundreds of engineers that get paid thousands of dollars for something you bought at Pep Boys because your buddy who doesn't have a job told you it was 'better'?!?

  18. #18
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    It's not THAT expensive. Hell, retail it's only $3 more per quart than the Amsoil 5w40 I put in my M52. I pay wholesale, but $20-30 is no big deal... only needs to be changed about twice a year people, you spend 9x the difference of a single oil change on a single front rotor for the e46 M3.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by dj10 View Post
    Hmmm, lets see. I've raced Porsche Turbo's and now racing BMW's, since 1992. The Porsche's turbo spun at 125,000 rpm and I've beat the hell out of the BMW race car and never used anything but 5w 50w or 10w 40. I've never had an oil related failure. Let common sense be your guide and change oil & filter often, no matter what oil you use.
    I was unaware that oil performance was a transitive property of automobiles across makes and models.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ohnoes View Post
    I don't think "loads of low-end torque" accurately describes the S54. I feel it is rather lacking in low-end torque; that's why its redline is 8,000 RPM.

    Damn, you read my mind exactly. That's my only complaint with the S54, is lack of low-end. Now keep in mind I drive an RX-7 twin turbo. And with my turbos set up non-sequentially, I have even less low end due to a little more turbo lag, but the instant they start spooling at about 2500, hold on cause it's pushing you into the back of the seat.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by White94RX View Post
    Now keep in mind I drive an RX-7 twin turbo. And with my turbos set up non-sequentially
    Is this a custom job? 1 per rotor? Which year 13B is it? I'd be interested in pics of this.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevlar View Post
    The oil that is lubricating the s54 has to deal with many more lubrication areas than just a spinning shaft on a turbo.
    Yep, just about the same number of parts, give or take a few, as any engine, with few exceptions.
    I don't want to burst anyone's bubble but do you really think all BMW dealers really use 10w 60w all the time when changing E46 M3 oil? Something to think about.
    Dan Jones

    "life is tough, it's tougher if your stupid"

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dj10 View Post
    Yep, just about the same number of parts, give or take a few, as any engine, with few exceptions.
    I don't want to burst anyone's bubble but do you really think all BMW dealers really use 10w 60w all the time when changing E46 M3 oil? Something to think about.
    Er... if they're not and they're giving you an invoice saying they did they're gonna get sued.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by dj10 View Post
    Yep, just about the same number of parts, give or take a few, as any engine, with few exceptions.
    I don't want to burst anyone's bubble but do you really think all BMW dealers really use 10w 60w all the time when changing E46 M3 oil? Something to think about.
    Ever dealership I have ever gone too...

    The bore & stroke on a E46 M3 are drastically different than that on a 911. Do you think they randomly decided to use 10W-60 versus 5W-30? Did the enginners say, hey, let's use 10W-60 so we can be 'different'?
    Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by hundreds of engineers that get paid thousands of dollars for something you bought at Pep Boys because your buddy who doesn't have a job told you it was 'better'?!?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevlar View Post
    Ever dealership I have ever gone too...

    The bore & stroke on a E46 M3 are drastically different than that on a 911. Do you think they randomly decided to use 10W-60 versus 5W-30? Did the enginners say, hey, let's use 10W-60 so we can be 'different'?
    If 10w 60w is so good why can't you buy it from anyone else but dealers and a few shops like Turner Motorsports? Castrol makes a damn good 10W40w synthec for 1/2 the price. IMO it's a money making scam. Change the oil & filter sooner than BMW wants you too.
    Dan Jones

    "life is tough, it's tougher if your stupid"

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