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Maybe I'm blind, but can someone explain what the difference is between the BMW and MOPAR GL-5 differential fluids?

Keehn

Member
I'm rapidly coming up on my initial 600 mile service, which I will be doing myself, so I'm doing the prep work in getting supplies ready.

But, I also know that BMW charges a premium simply for their marque (roundel), and industry standards are well...standards. So, when BMW's G3 axle oil says it's rated "API GL-5", then that means ANY manufacturer with a comparable product should also fit the bill, right?

Here's the issue. I've got ONE bottle of BMW's G3 oil (500ML) at $51.00 https://www.bobsbmw.com/store/product/bmw-synthetic-g3-hypoid-axle-oil-70w-80-500ml

But, doing some comparison shopping, I found a MOPAR API-GL-5 synthetic equivalent for $15.39!!!! https://www.carid.com/mopar/sae-70w-80-synthetic-api-gl-5-differential-fluid-mpn-68227765ab.html

What gives!!! 🤯🤯🤬🤬🤯🤯

By the way, I went ahead and ordered four bottles of the MOPAR 😎. Even if for some reason I discover it doesn't work, I'll find a use for them.

Mike
 

Adrian R

Well-known member
I'm rapidly coming up on my initial 600 mile service, which I will be doing myself, so I'm doing the prep work in getting supplies ready.

But, I also know that BMW charges a premium simply for their marque (roundel), and industry standards are well...standards. So, when BMW's G3 axle oil says it's rated "API GL-5", then that means ANY manufacturer with a comparable product should also fit the bill, right?

Here's the issue. I've got ONE bottle of BMW's G3 oil (500ML) at $51.00 https://www.bobsbmw.com/store/product/bmw-synthetic-g3-hypoid-axle-oil-70w-80-500ml

But, doing some comparison shopping, I found a MOPAR API-GL-5 synthetic equivalent for $15.39!!!! https://www.carid.com/mopar/sae-70w-80-synthetic-api-gl-5-differential-fluid-mpn-68227765ab.html

What gives!!! 🤯🤯🤬🤬🤯🤯

By the way, I went ahead and ordered four bottles of the MOPAR 😎. Even if for some reason I discover it doesn't work, I'll find a use for them.

Mike
I bought two bottles at a local Dodge dealer for $40, enough to swap out the trans and final drive...
 

MilwDave

Active member
Site Supporter
I'm rapidly coming up on my initial 600 mile service, which I will be doing myself, so I'm doing the prep work in getting supplies ready.

But, I also know that BMW charges a premium simply for their marque (roundel), and industry standards are well...standards. So, when BMW's G3 axle oil says it's rated "API GL-5", then that means ANY manufacturer with a comparable product should also fit the bill, right?

Here's the issue. I've got ONE bottle of BMW's G3 oil (500ML) at $51.00 https://www.bobsbmw.com/store/product/bmw-synthetic-g3-hypoid-axle-oil-70w-80-500ml

But, doing some comparison shopping, I found a MOPAR API-GL-5 synthetic equivalent for $15.39!!!! https://www.carid.com/mopar/sae-70w-80-synthetic-api-gl-5-differential-fluid-mpn-68227765ab.html

What gives!!! 🤯🤯🤬🤬🤯🤯

By the way, I went ahead and ordered four bottles of the MOPAR 😎. Even if for some reason I discover it doesn't work, I'll find a use for them.

Mike
There is no difference
 

Gr8adv

Well-known member
The most expensive service you will ever make is the cheapest.

I think I will likely spill more beer this year than the annualized cost difference beteeen what the manufacturer recommends and the others.

You do you!
 
Last edited:

BobW

Active member
My shop now has the "G3"/GL5 in bulk and when they did my service the final drive was refreshed for $7.XX USD. I actually double checked they hadn't mixed up the part number for the old standard issue 75-90 (that I have many quarts of :LOL:) or perhaps I owed them some money based on the prices we have had and are still discussing on the forum or if they had erred in putting in the "old" instead of the "new" spec. They assured me I had gotten the correct FD oil and explained the bulk purchase and price savings.

That said, proper spec lubricant is just that, proper spec, period. BMW has used Golden Spectro, Castrol and now Shell as their vendors over the last few years and at times the country the product was obtained determined which company provided the lubricant with the same BMW sticker on the jug. All this said, just buy quality kit and for me 95% of the time I buy from my shop as the price is competitive and when traveling I always have a filter and crush washer to do my own servicing and may or may not grab oil from a BMW dealership if convenient or whatever other OEM dealer or auto supply place that has proper spec lubricants available. The spec is important, not the label as long as it is a reputable Brand of lubricants.
 

Calboy

Active member
I don't understand why nobody mentions the Amsoil 80W90 synthetic gear oil API GL5. I have used it in all of my bikes, regardless of brand, that had a final drive or a hole for transmission oil change.
They have a 75W90 Severe Gear API GL5 gear oil as well.
Not one problem.
 

R12C-R18TC

Active member
Site Supporter
Elite Member
Countless members on the chromehead.org forum used synthetic hypoid gear oil in the final drive and tranny. A BMW service tech on that forum suggested 70W140 over against 70W90. Some used Lucas, some Mobil1, others Redline.
Bye the way....we are fortunate to have a dry clutch. Easier to get the right oil when friction modifiers aren't in the picture.
 

Adrian R

Well-known member
I don't understand why nobody mentions the Amsoil 80W90 synthetic gear oil API GL5. I have used it in all of my bikes, regardless of brand, that had a final drive or a hole for transmission oil change.
They have a 75W90 Severe Gear API GL5 gear oil as well.
Not one problem.
Isn't the correct viscosity spec. I use Amsoil severe gear oil in my Valkyrie's final drive
 

Keehn

Member
I don't understand why nobody mentions the Amsoil 80W90 synthetic gear oil API GL5. I have used it in all of my bikes, regardless of brand, that had a final drive or a hole for transmission oil change.
They have a 75W90 Severe Gear API GL5 gear oil as well.
Not one problem.
I have a fondness for Amsoil as well. Like I implied in my original post, if I find I "can't" use it, I'll find other uses for the MOPAR lube.

In lubricity tests over the decades I've seen, Amsoil has consistently been #1 or at very near the top, so I'd trust them any day of the week.

Mike
 

Keehn

Member
The most expensive service you will ever make is the cheapest.

I think I will likely spill more beer this year than the annualized cost difference beteeen what the manufacturer recommends and the others.

You do you!
Well...

I do my own shade tree work, everything from rebuilding transmissions and engines with hand tools and some specialty equipment, so I'm not one to shy away from simple service jobs ;). You didn't know that about me so no worries!

Anyways, when I look at an oil, gear oil in this case, I trust the API specification, especially when the bottle is a name brand, like MOPAR.

https://www.api.org/products-and-services/engine-oil/unauthorized-use-of-api-certification-marks So, while I don't see any penalties per se for illegally using the API mark on an oil bottle, a quick scan through the offender list reveals that GENERIC no-name oils are the ones to look out for.

https://www.api.org/-/media/Files/Certification/Engine-Oil-Diesel/Publications/1560-Eighth-Edition-April-2013.pdf Lastly, a quick read. The API GL-5 spec is further defined in the ASTM D7450, meaning that any oil manufacturer who wants to certify their oil as GL-5 in good standing with the American Petroleum Institute (API) SHALL meet the ASTM D7450.

This means Esso/Shell
This means Amsoil
This means Mobil 1
This means Walmart-brand
This means BMW-brand
This means VW-brand
This means MOPAR-brand
...and so on.

Mike
 
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