Jun 23, 2019 update to the BMW 318is project car

Project BMW 318is: A Word About Lubricants

We always use good, quality lubricants in our project cars. For our E30 318is project, we partnered with Red Line Synthetic Oil and used their 10W40 street (as opposed to pure race oil, which does not have the correct additive package for street use) full synthetic motor oil.

In the transmission we used their MTL, which we have always found helps an older transmission shift more smoothly and more easily.

We love MTL and use it on almost all of our project cars. Nothing loosens up an old gear box and make its shift better.

In the differential we used their 75W110 gear oil.

Your author installs the gear oil with a small transfer pump (available at any auto parts store). We have never had a failure when using Red Line Synthetic Oil.​​​​​​

With this lubrication package we feel confident to run any track day or autocross activity.

Red Line makes a full range of fluids for your car, including hi-temp brake fluids that has served us well at both Virginia International Raceway and at the Tail of the Dragon.


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View comments on the GRM forums
Danny Shields
Danny Shields HalfDork
6/24/19 12:40 p.m.

I think Redline makes good products. Years ago, I switched our national champion Jetta GLI to Redline MTL in the transmission, and it made a big difference. It definitely improved shift quality by improving the performance of the synchronizers.

I had a friend who ran Redline racing motor oil in his Formula Vee road race car. He told me he only changed the oil once per season, and never had a failure.

DBKirby None
6/25/19 3:13 p.m.

I am about to get a 1990 325i that has been sitting for 5 years.  I am planning on flat bedding it to my house and starting on the project.  Do you have any info on where I should start the project. I have been following this 318 project and am open to any guidance you may have,  Thanks Dave

7/11/19 9:47 p.m.

Is that not an orange-tag transmission that specifies ATF? Did you purposefuly choose to use MTL instead of Redline's ATF?

DBKirby New Reader
8/28/19 12:30 p.m.

In reply to DBKirby :

The 90' is finally at my house and I am working on making space in the garage for the project.  


z31maniac MegaDork
8/28/19 1:29 p.m.
DBKirby said:

In reply to DBKirby :

The 90' is finally at my house and I am working on making space in the garage for the project.  


Water pump/timing belt/thermostat definitely. I'd go ahead and change the ignition components/plugs as well. 

Just use the new factory plugs. The M20 doesn't tolerate fancy plugs very well.

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