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F10 / F11 (2011 - 2016)
The sixth generation of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) was produced from 2011 - 2016 with LCI updates arriving in 2014. In the US BMW offered a hatchback 5 Series Gran Truismo (F07) and the rest of the world also go a Station Wagon/Touring version F11.

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Old 10-10-2019, 03:23 PM
Breach Breach is offline
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Rear differential oil and type?

I was about to change my rear differential's oil, but then became a bit confused. Mine is a HAG 205AL one.

1. Is this an open differential or electronically limited slip one (it's the latter according to Wikipedia)?
2. According to ETK cars with production date until 07/2011 take 75W-90 GL5 oil, namely: BMW Synthetik OSP (83222365987)

As of 07/2011, this changes to Hypoid axle oil G1 (75W-85, 83222295532), even though there is no P/N change in terms of hardware I can see. Is this when BMW drops Castrol, or is there another reason? ;-)

3. Finally, I see third parties also selling 75W-140 GL4/GL5 oils as compatible, not sure on what basis...?

So, I was about to get 1l of Castrol Syntrax 75W-90 which should match the OSP OEM fluid, but Castrol clearly say that it's only for open differentials, so I am not sure this is the right oil after all (see p. 1).
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Old 10-10-2019, 04:12 PM
Markst Markst is offline
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You have an open diff. The 75w140 oils are for limited slip diffs.
Castrol Syntrax Long Life 75W-90 GL5 is the new name for the oil you need.
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Old 10-10-2019, 04:18 PM
surly surly is offline
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@Breach - it is really annoying and I concur that no part#s changed but they changed the fluid spec as of a particular manufacture date (not service date). I always thought that was weird.

For my own vehicle, I put Amsoil 75W110 in the rear (based on TIS/ETK pointing to either SAF-XO or OSP from the factory) and Hypoid G2 in the front.
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Old 10-10-2019, 04:34 PM
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So as I thought. Thanks guys!
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Old 10-11-2019, 07:40 AM
Breach Breach is offline
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Also confirmed by Castrol UK:

"So the SAF-XO has now been renamed Castrol Syntrax Long-life 75W-90 so that's what we would suggest"

And some trivia from their engineers on why the spec changes:

"BOT448 became the fuel economy 12cst successor of SAF-XO in BMW FF in 2012 (or so). Chemistry is pretty much the same. The 15cst SAF-XO is technically still suited- if not better than BOT448.

We weren't able to claim GL5 as we hadn't all tests but in theory BMW hypoid axles require a GL5"
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Old 10-11-2019, 01:34 PM
surly surly is offline
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SAF-XO has been a BMW spec for a long time and many, many GL5s are "recommended" to replace SAF-XO. Calling for SAF-XO means you have tons of choice.

Hypoid G1 and G2 are unicorn oil. Maybe there's something special about them, maybe there isn't. But the major lube manufacturers don't even attempt to claim compatibility, they just say "nothing found". So, I used genuine G2 in my front diff - they're expensive, and the fronts seem to be the hardest on the fluid.

The spec for 75W90 used to be very wide, but was narrowed and split to 75W90 and 75W110 a while back. I chose Amsoil SevereGear 75W110 (SVT) for my rear diff, as I mentioned.
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:03 PM
Breach Breach is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surly View Post
SAF-XO has been a BMW spec for a long time and many, many GL5s are "recommended" to replace SAF-XO. Calling for SAF-XO means you have tons of choice.

Hypoid G1 and G2 are unicorn oil. Maybe there's something special about them, maybe there isn't. But the major lube manufacturers don't even attempt to claim compatibility, they just say "nothing found". So, I used genuine G2 in my front diff - they're expensive, and the fronts seem to be the hardest on the fluid.

The spec for 75W90 used to be very wide, but was narrowed and split to 75W90 and 75W110 a while back. I chose Amsoil SevereGear 75W110 (SVT) for my rear diff, as I mentioned.
Well, I guess I'm lucky to drive a pre 07/2011 RWD - at least it's easy for me ;-) Otherwise, G1 *is* Castrol BOT 448 (http://nfuzedenergy.co.za/img/pds/40.pdf), and it seems there are a few G1-G3 "recommended" oils, e.g. RED LINE 75W85 GL-5 GEAR OIL. Castrol also probably makes G2 - I'm sure BMW don't produce the oils themselves.
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:11 PM
Markst Markst is offline
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I don't see any mention of the heavier 75w110 being approved. Where did you find this?
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Old 10-11-2019, 02:21 PM
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Doug Huffman Doug Huffman is offline
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The following rear differential oils are used in BMW group vehicles

newTIS.infobeta
Home / BMW E70 X5 xDrive35d SAV / Repair Manuals and Technical Data / 33 Rear axle, rear-wheel drive, guide /
Enclosure 1 of SI 33 01 96 (149), 08/2018

The following rear axle differential oils are used in vehicles of the BMW Group ...

https://www.newtis.info/tisv2/a/en/e...ide/1VnczONFlo
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:13 AM
yogi799 yogi799 is offline
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done a huge research on that. took me weeks to find out for my car. check my video below.
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Old 10-13-2019, 02:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yogi799 View Post
done a huge research on that. took me weeks to find out for my car. check my video below.
I've seen all your videos, I think (keep them coming!). If you go with OEM oil, it's actually quite easy - just check in ETK for your VIN. Now, finding a compatible after-market oil is a bit of a challenge indeed... especially with the G oils.
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Old 10-14-2019, 07:16 AM
surly surly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breach View Post
I've seen all your videos, I think (keep them coming!). If you go with OEM oil, it's actually quite easy - just check in ETK for your VIN. Now, finding a compatible after-market oil is a bit of a challenge indeed... especially with the G oils.
Yes and no - the dealer parts guy and the service dept laison to parts spent 40 minutes with me on my particular VIN/build date, and had a hard time coming up with what was in my car and the "best choice" for front and rear diffs. Front especially. The 2011 build year seems particularly quirky for all kinds of parts shopping it would seem.

Agree - The G1/G2/G3 oils aren't something I tried to match in the aftermarket. SAF-XO, in particular, is very easy to match, and synthetik OSP is good too. Considering the volume that BMW does in the former two, I'm led to conclude that there's some good reason why BMW created G1/G2/G3 for certain applications and those reasons might be important. I know lots of people think it's a BMW conspiracy to keep things expensive when performing service, but these fluids are "lifetime" and there would be significant cost to BMW to spec a new fluid with a special formula instead of using something they have used in such massive quantity for so many years.

Considering that only 500-600mL of G2 is required, and it's an "every few years" service requirement, I went with genuine G2. I've also read posts from people who put any old 75W90 GL5 in their front diff...
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Old 10-14-2019, 07:44 AM
Breach Breach is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surly View Post
Yes and no - the dealer parts guy and the service dept laison to parts spent 40 minutes with me on my particular VIN/build date, and had a hard time coming up with what was in my car and the "best choice" for front and rear diffs. Front especially. The 2011 build year seems particularly quirky for all kinds of parts shopping it would seem.

Agree - The G1/G2/G3 oils aren't something I tried to match in the aftermarket. SAF-XO, in particular, is very easy to match, and synthetik OSP is good too. Considering the volume that BMW does in the former two, I'm led to conclude that there's some good reason why BMW created G1/G2/G3 for certain applications and those reasons might be important. I know lots of people think it's a BMW conspiracy to keep things expensive when performing service, but these fluids are "lifetime" and there would be significant cost to BMW to spec a new fluid with a special formula instead of using something they have used in such massive quantity for so many years.

Considering that only 500-600mL of G2 is required, and it's an "every few years" service requirement, I went with genuine G2. I've also read posts from people who put any old 75W90 GL5 in their front diff...
1. From what I can see, for all intents and purposes OSP = SAF-XO - same viscosity (75W-90), same current P/N and same uses in TIS.

2. From my limited research on gear oils (https://www.mdpi.com/2075-4442/6/3/68/pdf), and what Castrol wrote (see above), the 2011 change was done with fuel efficiency in mind.

Lower viscosity / lower kinematic viscosity (measured in centistokes, cSt) apparently leads to better fuel efficiency. Also, according to Castrol, OSP/SAF-XO can still be used instead of G1/BOT448.

No idea about the front diff situation, I'm a RWD bum ;-)
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