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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
After too many hours spent trying to track down alternatives for ATF M-V (Type M5) I figured I would share the results. Especially as many shops don't even understand the difference. I am currently fighting charges for the wrong fluid (Valvoline MaxLife ATF, a low viscosity ATF) a local goodyear put in my car. In my search I actually managed to find a product sheet on the OEM fluid as well as the true replacements for it.

Mazda OEM ATF M-V (Type M5) | $15/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/19YESrbTWoGo0yc636el4NFP92d9d8Z2-/view?usp=sharing
Beck/Arnley Premium Automatic Transmission Fluid (Type M5 for Mazda Vehicles) | $12.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lInmZAeuqkJdFU_xbUoU45ESjiCpcPvN/view?usp=sharing
Mobil 1 Full Synthetic ATF | $10/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1amFMhHfkE_eHa91vAmLJxoue7Nm1k-J_/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil High Mileage Synthetic ATF | $7.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uBeN9LIM41TcRh10rQ1EchNiGFlCb6eB/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil Dex/Merc ATF | $5/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mzg1eJ60coIOez6AD_EF5Kyq_Msr-bBO/view?usp=sharing
Supertech High Mileage ATF | $3.50/Quart
Code:
There are no data sheets available for Supertech's High Mileage ATF but after hours on the phone I have confirmed that it is blended by Pennzoil for Walmart and has the same viscosity ratings as their Dex/Merc ATF and High Mileage Synthetic ATF but itself is not full synthetic.
I am currently using the Supertech High Mileage ATF in my 2007 Mazda 3 2.3L and at $15/gal you just can't go wrong. Also I didn't need to add any additives since it is a high mileage blend and has the necessary additives already. When using Mobil 1 or another high viscosity blend I would definitely add LubeGard.
 

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After too many hours spent trying to track down alternatives for ATF M-V (Type M5) I figured I would share the results. Especially as many shops don't even understand the difference. I am currently fighting charges for the wrong fluid (Valvoline MaxLife ATF, a low viscosity ATF) a local goodyear put in my car. In my search I actually managed to find a product sheet on the OEM fluid as well as the true replacements for it.

Mazda OEM ATF M-V (Type M5) | $15/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/19YESrbTWoGo0yc636el4NFP92d9d8Z2-/view?usp=sharing
Beck/Arnley Premium Automatic Transmission Fluid (Type M5 for Mazda Vehicles) | $12.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lInmZAeuqkJdFU_xbUoU45ESjiCpcPvN/view?usp=sharing
Mobil 1 Full Synthetic ATF | $10/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1amFMhHfkE_eHa91vAmLJxoue7Nm1k-J_/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil High Mileage Synthetic ATF | $7.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uBeN9LIM41TcRh10rQ1EchNiGFlCb6eB/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil Dex/Merc ATF | $5/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mzg1eJ60coIOez6AD_EF5Kyq_Msr-bBO/view?usp=sharing
Supertech High Mileage ATF | $3.50/Quart
Code:
There are no data sheets available for Supertech's High Mileage ATF but after hours on the phone I have confirmed that it is blended by Pennzoil for Walmart and has the same viscosity ratings as their Dex/Merc ATF and High Mileage Synthetic ATF but itself is not full synthetic.
I am currently using the Supertech High Mileage ATF in my 2007 Mazda 3 2.3L and at $15/gal you just can't go wrong. Also I didn't need to add any additives since it is a high mileage blend and has the necessary additives already. When using Mobil 1 or another high viscosity blend I would definitely add LubeGard.

I always use Valvline Maxlife ATF in my 07 6s v6 because it IS compatible with Mazda M-v AND T-IV (specified for the 6sp autos) I took a screenshot from the PI sheet (link is to entire sheet). Did you have problems after they used this fluid in your car?

https://sharena21.springcm.com/Public/Document/18452/9e447451-fe75-e711-9c10-ac162d889bd3/3fa3136a-09bd-e711-9c12-ac162d889bd1
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I always use Valvline Maxlife ATF in my 07 6s v6 because it IS compatible with Mazda M-v AND T-IV (specified for the 6sp autos) I took a screenshot from the PI sheet (link is to entire sheet). Did you have problems after they used this fluid in your car?
Too many problems to list, stuck solenoids, stuck clutches. Unable to shift from 1st-2nd. Extremely harsh shifting up on the rest of the gears, and bucking when shifting down. This was a full fill after a flush and the levels were proper too.

Replaced fluids (with Mobil 1 at the time) and the problems immediately stopped. Yes the sheet does say it is M-V compatible but also says it is for use in Low Viscosity applications. Now how can that be? It may be ok to top off your tranmission, but a full fill will be detrimental. They do make a Valvoline Mercon V and MaxLife IMPORT that is more appropriate.
 

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That is odd that you had that many problems, I have heard of quite a few people on here that have used Maxlife and even the Castrol Import ATF without any issues at all except for some that had poorly maintained transmissions.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The people that had success with maxlife atf were probably using the old formula before it changed, this is part of the problem and you can see it unfolding about 6 years ago. The Petroleum Quality Institute of America independently tests fluids and got vastly different results than advertised. The "test results" are an almost perfect match on their new data sheets for MaxLife and the old ratings "Average-a" are now almost identical to their ratings on the MaxLife Import data sheet.

But if Valvoline is as inconsistent as they were in the past and you can't even trust their own data sheets, I will not use their products and can't recommend that anybody does.

I tried Castrol Import as well, can not recommend that either. It does work, but is on the thick side (by a lot) and if you are a person who does more than an hour of driving you will start to notice issues. The fluid starts expanding going over the max line and causing bubbles, and on the flip side when the car is cold it is barely on the dip stick. Very strange fluid, but that might also be mixing inconsistencies. I have personally used all above with no issues, except for the Beck/Arnley Premium Automatic Transmission Fluid (Type M5 for Mazda Vehicles), but that is what my local Mazda Dealership uses when they run out of OEM, and pepboys sells it.
 

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The people that had success with maxlife atf were probably using the old formula before it changed, this is part of the problem and you can see it unfolding about 6 years ago. The Petroleum Quality Institute of America independently tests fluids and got vastly different results than advertised. The "test results" are an almost perfect match on their new data sheets for MaxLife and the old ratings "Average-a" are now almost identical to their ratings on the MaxLife Import date sheet.

But if Valvoline is as inconsistent as they were in the past and you can't even trust their own data sheets, I will not use their products and can't recommend that anybody does.
I used Maxlife when I flushed my trans last year, I haven't had any issues but you make a good point and I will keep this in mind as I get closer to time for another fluid change.
 

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Came across this thread looking for cheap M-V fluid. I found the MSDS for the Supertech High mileage ATF fluid. It says its made by Citgo, not Shell (Shell owns Pennzoil). Viscosity looks to be OK, but can anyone confirm or deny my findings?

http://msds.walmartstores.com/client/document?productid=1073080&productguid=dff6fdaf-29a7-4e77-b30c-00ca4559e191&DocumentKey=undefined&HazdocumentKey=undefined&MSDS=0&subformat=NAM


After too many hours spent to track down alternatives for ATF M-V (Type M5) I figured I would share the results. Especially as many shops don't even understand the difference. I am currently fighting charges for the wrong fluid (Valvoline MaxLife ATF, a low viscosity ATF) a local goodyear put in my car. In my search I actually managed to find a product sheet on the OEM fluid as well as the true replacements for it.

Mazda OEM ATF M-V (Type M5) | $15/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/19YESrbTWoGo0yc636el4NFP92d9d8Z2-/view?usp=sharing
Beck/Arnley Premium Automatic Transmission Fluid (Type M5 for Mazda Vehicles) | $12.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lInmZAeuqkJdFU_xbUoU45ESjiCpcPvN/view?usp=sharing
Mobil 1 Full Synthetic ATF | $10/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1amFMhHfkE_eHa91vAmLJxoue7Nm1k-J_/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil High Mileage Synthetic ATF | $7.50/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uBeN9LIM41TcRh10rQ1EchNiGFlCb6eB/view?usp=sharing
Pennzoil Dex/Merc ATF | $5/Quart
Code:
Data Sheet: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mzg1eJ60coIOez6AD_EF5Kyq_Msr-bBO/view?usp=sharing
Supertech High Mileage ATF | $3.50/Quart
Code:
There are no data sheets available for Supertech's High Mileage ATF but after hours on the phone I have confirmed that it is blended by Pennzoil for Walmart and has the same viscosity ratings as their Dex/Merc ATF and High Mileage Synthetic ATF but itself is not full synthetic.
I am currently using the Supertech High Mileage ATF in my 2007 Mazda 3 2.3L and at $15/gal you just can't go wrong. Also I didn't need to add any additives since it is a high mileage blend and has the necessary additives already. When using Mobil 1 or another high viscosity blend I would definitely add LubeGard.
 

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I assume this works in the 4spd also?
2007 Mazda 3 2.0L auto...
So you are basically saying the cheapest stuff works the best! When Mazda wants $15 a quart!! That’s well over $150 just to do a proper service which is ridiculous!!!
 

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Too many problems to list, stuck solenoids, stuck clutches. Unable to shift from 1st-2nd. Extremely harsh shifting up on the rest of the gears, and bucking when shifting down. This was a full fill after a flush and the levels were proper too.

Replaced fluids (with Mobil 1 at the time) and the problems immediately stopped. Yes the sheet does say it is M-V compatible but also says it is for use in Low Viscosity applications. Now how can that be? It may be ok to top off your tranmission, but a full fill will be detrimental. They do make a Valvoline Mercon V and MaxLife IMPORT that is more appropriate.
At what mileage did you use the Valvoline fluid? And did you only a drain and fill?

Transmissions are a tricky business. It sounds like you did a drain /fill at fairly high mileage which broke free some small metal shavings in the process, hence causing the weird shifting pattern. You should consider yourself very lucky that the second fluid change fixed this problem.

Its very unlikely that it was the fluid itself which caused this. In any case, if you are still experiencing somewhat rough shifting especially when the gearbox is still cold, check the solenoids.

Also, Castrol simply being a thicker fluid should not be causing such massive variations in fluid volume between cold/warm. Probably didnt play nice with the existing fluid in the transmission.
 

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I assume this works in the 4spd also?
2007 Mazda 3 2.0L auto...
So you are basically saying the cheapest stuff works the best! When Mazda wants $15 a quart!! That’s well over $150 just to do a proper service which is ridiculous!!!
As far as I am aware, 2006+ Mazda 3's were a 5 speed auto. Yours is not a 4spd. To be honest, you can pretty much use almost any fluid under the sun without any issues so long that you are sure to change the transmission pan filter as well and dont wait until the mileage is super high. I'd recommend also changing the transmission solenoids while your pan is removed. If you are doing a high mileage trans fluid change replacing the filter is only more imperative.

If I'm dropping the pan, I'm skipping the cheap fluid all together and putting in good stuff -

 

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As far as I am aware, 2006+ Mazda 3's were a 5 speed auto.”


The 2.3l is a 5 speed auto I have the 2.0l and they got the 5spd in 2010 I found all that information from replacing the engine with a 2010 2.0l then the transmission didn’t work (because I had the wrong flywheel installed) so I freaked out jumped the gun and got a used LOWer mileage 07 4spd trans. Just before I swapped them I did some research and realized the 2010 2.0L I got had the 5spd auto hence the flywheel is practically flat and the 4 spd has 3/4” raised area that the TC mounts too. The reason why my original Transmission didn’t work since the flat flywheel pulled it out of the pump just enough to not engage it at all. Anyway I opted to install the 135k LESS mileage transmission I just got and want the correct fluid since I also made the mistake of using the Maxlife it works in the trans but when it warmed up I noticed strange shift patterns and I do NOT want to take any chances with this so I will go get the good stuff and report back! I also had a crazy problem with my daytime running lights and brake abs warning lights coming on in park and neutral Because the SHIFT LOCATION SWITCH was bad! I swapped the old one on and it was fixed. That also made the trans shift weird and engine stall!
 

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What a story. Which fluid do you plan to use?
WELL I stopped by my local advanced auto and I looked at their atf collection! They did have the Mobil 1 for like $11 a quart but no where on the bottle did it state Mazda ATF - MV, they also have some import brands that “their computer” was telling them would all work but I found a Lucas ATF that actually stated on the bottle that it is for Mazda ATF-MV for $9 what do you think? I did also see Mazda ATF-M lll on the bottle and only one of the other high mileage import brand said that. image.jpg
image.jpg
 

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WELL I stopped by my local advanced auto and I looked at their atf collection! They did have the Mobil 1 for like $11 a quart but no where on the bottle did it state Mazda ATF - MV, they also have some import brands that “their computer” was telling them would all work but I found a Lucas ATF that actually stated on the bottle that it is for Mazda ATF-MV for $9 what do you think? I did also see Mazda ATF-M lll on the bottle and only one of the other high mileage import brand said that. View attachment 238530 View attachment 238531
It doesn't really matter which fluid you use. Do you plan to replace the transmission pan filter?
 

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I should at this point since I am looking at $60-$80 just for the fluid! What’s another $20 for protecting the investment!
Wait, how much fluid are you planning to buy? Only a fraction of the fluid is going to drain out, so don't buy too much. I think 3 or 4 quarts of fluid will be enough.

Making sure the transmission pan filter is new and clean is the most important thing you can do in this case. Considering the mileage of your gearbox, I would also put a "pan magnet" inside there as well.

It might be worth it to pay a little extra and buy one of those fluids I mentioned earlier - Motul or Redline. Very good quality ATF.
 

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I should at this point since I am looking at $60-$80 just for the fluid! What’s another $20 for protecting the investment!
Hello, If the trans in your Mazda 3 is the JA5A-EL (Jatco) 5spd it will drain about 10.5-11 qts after 3 drain and refills. That transmission does not have a serviceable filter (without splitting the case). Your best bet will be an inline filter that gets replaced annually.
I went with Mobil 1 MV (5 years ago) and it solved all the problems I was having. Currently at 185,000mi
Good Luck.
 

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I've been using Cam2 Multi-Vehicle Synthetic ATF for the last 35K without issues in my FN4 transmission, service was done via a flush and then the pan was dropped for filter replacement
 
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