Just another opinion thread: '18 BMW, '20 Kia.

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Apr 18, 2022
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I've been scanning through these forums for days now learning about different use cases for different products (Wix vs Wix XP for instance) and have come to the conclusion that someone here is already going to know the information I seek and will be able to come to a more educated opinion even if I continue down this rabbit hole for weeks.

So I'll provide my OCI, and how I use my vehicles and hope some knowledgeable folks deign to enlightenment me.

First off is that I keep my cars basically until they're practically worn out. Just recently lost my '05 Civic @ 348k due to loaning it to a relative for a few months and they couldn't be bothered to check the oil at fill ups as I asked (burned 1qt every 1k). That car ran Denso filters from new, and started with 5w20 cheap dino oil, ended with 5w30 Amsoil OE with 4-5k intervals.

So, I replaced it with a 2020 Kia Forte FE that carries me 600mi/week 95% highway. I've been using Wix/Wix XP filters, Amsoil Signature 5w20 (got a stellar 1 time deal) but will be switching to Pennzoil Ultra 5w20 with 5k OCIs. I get Wix filters in bulk for $5.30/unit and Pennzoil Ultra Platinum Full Synthetic for $68 for 3x5qt I'm open to suggestions for anything better for a similar price.

Now for the tricky car.. a 2018 BMW M550i, N63TU2 engine. I don't drive this one a ton, and when I do I usually drive it pretty hard. It currently has a BMW filter (which I'm fine with continuing to use factory filters unless someone knows of anything better) but the oil is where I need the most help. I'd like to put the best stuff I can in this car. I don't care much about fuel economy in a car that I don't often use. It's currently running BMWs LL-01FE 0w20. Probably going to run a 5k OCI on this as well, which means annually. Noticed from my research Amsoil Signature (which is the best I can find, generally) doesn't have the LL-01 cert which may mean nothing, so next change I'm going with 5w20 Pennzoil Euro.. though I gather that heavier weight oil is better for harder use? What oil should I target here if price is no object and longevity is the goal? I'm not tied to any brand either.
 
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I've been scanning through these forums for days now learning about different use cases for different products (Wix vs Wix XP for instance) and have come to the conclusion that someone here is already going to know the information I seek and will be able to come to a more educated opinion even if I continue down this rabbit hole for weeks.

So I'll provide my OCI, and how I use my vehicles and hope some knowledgeable folks deign to enlightenment me.

First off is that I keep my cars basically until they're practically worn out. Just recently lost my '05 Civic @ 348k due to loaning it to a relative for a few months and they couldn't be bothered to check the oil at fill ups as I asked (burned 1qt every 1k). That car ran Denso filters from new, and started with 5w20 cheap dino oil, ended with 5w30 Amsoil OE with 4-5k intervals.

So, I replaced it with a 2020 Kia Forte FE that carries me 600mi/week 95% highway. I've been using Wix/Wix XP filters, Amsoil Signature 5w20 (got a stellar 1 time deal) but will be switching to Pennzoil Ultra 5w20 with 5k OCIs. I get Wix filters in bulk for $5.30/unit and Pennzoil Ultra Platinum Full Synthetic for $68 for 3x5qt I'm open to suggestions for anything better for a similar price.

Now for the tricky car.. a 2018 BMW M550i, N63TU2 engine. I don't drive this one a ton, and when I do I usually drive it pretty hard. It currently has a BMW filter (which I'm fine with continuing to use factory filters unless someone knows of anything better) but the oil is where I need the most help. I'd like to put the best stuff I can in this car. I don't care much about fuel economy in a car that I don't often use. It's currently running BMWs LL-01FE 0w20. Probably going to run a 5k OCI on this as well, which means annually. Noticed from my research Amsoil Signature (which is the best I can find, generally) doesn't have the LL-01 cert which may mean nothing, so next change I'm going with 5w20 Pennzoil Euro.. though I gather that heavier weight oil is better for harder use? What oil should I target here if price is no object and longevity is the goal? I'm not tied to any brand either.
No. The N63 does NOT take a 20w.

What country are you in? If you're in the US you can use an LL01/LL04/LL01FE/LL14FE. If you really do drive it hard and not grocery getter then stick with LL01/LL04 or if you want to go off the reservation look at Mercedes 229.50/51, Porsche A40, C30, VW 504/507. Perhaps Porsche C40/VW 511.

Examples:
BMW Dealer oil in 5w30 or 0w30 weight.
Pennzoil 5w40 Euro or 5w30 Euro L
Quaker State 5w40 Euro

Stick of OE filter. There's nothing to be gained by trying to find something "better".
 
Last edited:
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Several things:
1. OE BMW filters are made by MANN/HUMMEL, Mahle or Hengst. N63 I think gets MANN filter. MANN owns WIX! There is your answer if you were wondering if Wix is better.

2. LL01 FE 0W20 oil doesn’t exist. LL17FE is 0W20 grade and what BMW currently uses.

3. Pennzoil etc. in W20 grade are not if equal quality due to additional requirements BMW has with its approval process.

4. N63 originally was specified for LL01 (minimum HTHS 3.5, usually “heavy” XW30 or light XW40 oils). Later it was backspecd to LL01 FE (minimum HTHS 3, light XW30 oils) and now LL17FE oils. That is strictly due to CAFE (mpg).

5. N63 is notorious oil consumer (and notorious for a lot of other reasons). I would stick to heavy oils.

6. Which oils? If under warranty stick to LL01 (Pennzoil Platinum Euro 5W40, Motul X-Cess 5W40 GEN2, Valvoline European Vehicle 5W40). If no warranty, go Castrol Edge 0W40 and never look back.
 

slyasa

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Joined
Apr 18, 2022
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No. The N63 does NOT take a 20w.

What country are you in? If you're in the US you can use an LL01/LL04/LL01FE/LL14FE. If you really do drive it hard and not grocery getter then stick with LL01/LL04 or if you want to go off the reservation look at Mercedes 229.50/51, Porsche A40, C30, VW 504/507. Perhaps Porsche C40/VW 511.

Examples:
BMW Dealer oil in 5w30 or 0w30 weight.
Pennzoil 5w40 Euro or 5w30 Euro L
Quaker State 5w40 Euro

Stick of OE filter. There's nothing to be gained by trying to find something "better".

Several things:
1. OE BMW filters are made by MANN/HUMMEL, Mahle or Hengst. N63 I think gets MANN filter. MANN owns WIX! There is your answer if you were wondering if Wix is better.

2. LL01 FE 0W20 oil doesn’t exist. LL17FE is 0W20 grade and what BMW currently uses.

3. Pennzoil etc. in W20 grade are not if equal quality due to additional requirements BMW has with its approval process.

4. N63 originally was specified for LL01 (minimum HTHS 3.5, usually “heavy” XW30 or light XW40 oils). Later it was backspecd to LL01 FE (minimum HTHS 3, light XW30 oils) and now LL17FE oils. That is strictly due to CAFE (mpg).

5. N63 is notorious oil consumer (and notorious for a lot of other reasons). I would stick to heavy oils.

6. Which oils? If under warranty stick to LL01 (Pennzoil Platinum Euro 5W40, Motul X-Cess 5W40 GEN2, Valvoline European Vehicle 5W40). If no warranty, go Castrol Edge 0W40 and never look back.

Ah, gotcha! Exactly the information I needed here. I really appreciate it! I'll certainly stick to the BMW filters, and next oil change I'll shift it to (probably Pennzoil due to availability) 5w40. I've also got a couple cases of Pennzoil Euro L 5w30 which claims to be LL-04 certified; how does that stack up to LL-01? If it's not to be used in the BMW I'll just huck it into the Kia which probably won't mind one bit being a non-turbo MPI car specced for 5w20 for below 0F and up to 10w30 above 0F and is already rather spoiled for a base model Forte.

20220419_103714.jpg
 
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You can use Euro L. It is basically LL01 just with less SAPS to be compatible with DPF/GPF devices. HTHS is a minimum 3.5, and it is heavy 5W30 (almost 5W40). HTHS in Euro L is apparently really strong, on par Mobil1 0W40 FS.
You don't need to use BMW oil filters. Find on FCPEuro, ECSTunning, AZAutohaus etc. MANN, Mahle or Hengst filters. Same goes for air filters and AC filters (in addition: Micronfilter, Corteco, Denso etc.).
 
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Ah, gotcha! Exactly the information I needed here. I really appreciate it! I'll certainly stick to the BMW filters, and next oil change I'll shift it to (probably Pennzoil due to availability) 5w40. I've also got a couple cases of Pennzoil Euro L 5w30 which claims to be LL-04 certified; how does that stack up to LL-01? If it's not to be used in the BMW I'll just huck it into the Kia which probably won't mind one bit being a non-turbo MPI car specced for 5w20 for below 0F and up to 10w30 above 0F and is already rather spoiled for a base model Forte.

View attachment 96972
That'll work Btw..what kind of cat do you own?
 

slyasa

Thread starter
Joined
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You can use Euro L. It is basically LL01 just with less SAPS to be compatible with DPF/GPF devices. HTHS is a minimum 3.5, and it is heavy 5W30 (almost 5W40). HTHS in Euro L is apparently really strong, on par Mobil1 0W40 FS.
You don't need to use BMW oil filters. Find on FCPEuro, ECSTunning, AZAutohaus etc. MANN, Mahle or Hengst filters. Same goes for air filters and AC filters (in addition: Micronfilter, Corteco, Denso etc.).
Gotcha, just did a bit more reading about SAPS, if anything I might shorten the OCI slightly due to the potential drop in TBN? And good to know about the filters, I had no idea who the OE was for BMW filters but I used to use MANN filters in my older Mercedes without any issues.

That'll work Btw..what kind of cat do you own?

I assume the cats on the BMW are 3 way, though that's just an assumption from some quick research. From what I gather all new cars sold in the US (I'm in the Midwest) have 3 way converters.. If I'm not mistaken this car (G30 M550) has four cats.
 
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Gotcha, just did a bit more reading about SAPS, if anything I might shorten the OCI slightly due to the potential drop in TBN? And good to know about the filters, I had no idea who the OE was for BMW filters but I used to use MANN filters in my older Mercedes without any issues.



I assume the cats on the BMW are 3 way, though that's just an assumption from some quick research. From what I gather all new cars sold in the US (I'm in the Midwest) have 3 way converters.. If I'm not mistaken this car (G30 M550) has four cats.
What year is that? If you are under warranty use BMW oil filter.
 
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.
BMW gasoline engines do use LL-04 for a very long time, probably since mid/late-2000s.
LL-04 (mid SAPS) is supposed to help combat IVD issues in modern DI engines. I only use
LL-04 in all my BMWs and Minis since that time.
The only reason for BMW of America sticking to LL-01 was the increased sulphur content
in the US compared to EU. This is no longer an issue since 2018 as sulphur is now almost
as low as in the EU, Japan etc.. So why didn't BMW change the recommendation in 2018?
I suspect that's simply because at that time they already had LL-17 FE around which helps
with fuel efficiency/cafe standards due to being thinner (0W-20). Hope this helps for some
better understanding.
.
 
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Just wanted to chime in on some good info here, and a few errors....
Factory BMW oil filter for the N63 is currently made by Mahle, see attached photo.

The two currently approved oils for the N63 used at North American BMW dealers is either LL-01FE 0w-30 or LL-17FE 0w-20. I recently received my last "free maintenance" service and specifically requested 0w-30. The LL-17FE recommendation didn't start until (I believe) with the 2020 model year...though may have been with 2021. You will commonly see dealers use either oil interchangeably on the N63.

As others said, I would avoid LL-17FE...I intend to go to LL-01 on all future, out of warranty oil changes, which I will be performing myself.
 

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