Mercedes ATF - Shell 134 or something else?

Joined
Nov 22, 2013
Messages
8
Location
Los Angeles, CA
Hey all,

Getting ready to do a drain and fill on our ML 350, last time I used Shell ATF 134. Any thoughts on that? Would there be a better fluid choice? I was considering using Valvoline Maxlife ATF as it has been praised so well.

Thanks -

Anthony
 
Joined
Aug 30, 2004
Messages
24,921
Location
CA
Shell ATF134 is probably the most economical (and approved) option if you have a local distributor.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
You can get the Shell ATF 134 from a shell distributor.


Last time I got a case it was in the $60 range for 12 quarts. That was a while ago, not sure about the price now.

Shell is on MB's approved list, but Valvoline Maxlife ATF is not. It's just recommended by Valvoline. Valvoline does have an approved fluid on the list, but I've never seen anyone sell it.

 
Joined
Dec 28, 2014
Messages
1,517
You can get the Shell ATF 134 from a shell distributor.


Last time I got a case it was in the $60 range for 12 quarts. That was a while ago, not sure about the price now.

Shell is on MB's approved list, but Valvoline Maxlife ATF is not. It's just recommended by Valvoline. Valvoline does have an approved fluid on the list, but I've never seen anyone sell it.

Price has gone up, of course...now it’s $50 for 6. Which is still cheaper than the alternative Mercedes options.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
Price has gone up, of course...now it’s $50 for 6. Which is still cheaper than the alternative Mercedes options.
Who did you call? Last time it was a little higher than $60 but not almost double. I think 134 FE was around $80 for 12 quarts and 134 was a little bit less than that. That was a few months ago.
 

Astro14

$100 Site Donor
Staff member
Joined
Oct 10, 2010
Messages
13,735
Location
Virginia Beach
I would pick something off the Mercedes Approved list (the bevo site linked earlier).

I’ve used the Shell and Pentosin in mine.
 
Joined
Dec 28, 2014
Messages
1,517
Who did you call? Last time it was a little higher than $60 but not almost double. I think 134 FE was around $80 for 12 quarts and 134 was a little bit less than that. That was a few months ago.
That’s the price on Amazon.
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
That’s the price on Amazon.
Oh, yeah, they're always much higher as shipping costs are high. You have to go to your local distributor. I've called them up and asked. They'll say something like, we got 120 cases in stock, how many do you need? Then I say just one, cash sale. Check the link for your local one.
 

Attachments

  • Shell Distributor.jpg
    Shell Distributor.jpg
    157.2 KB · Views: 10
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
There's a whole "Sticky" thread on this at the Benzworld forum.
This image is supposedly from a factory repair manual.
You realize that's from 2007 right? I believe 236.14 replaces 236.12. I believe 236.15 and 236.14 are different though so they shouldn't be mixed up. OP didn't mention the year ML but the older models used ATF 134. In the E class they went to ATF 134 FE in the 2011+ time frame so it's possible that it's not the right fluid depending on the year.
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2012
Messages
121
Location
Los Angeles, CA
You realize that's from 2007 right? I believe 236.14 replaces 236.12. I believe 236.15 and 236.14 are different though so they shouldn't be mixed up. OP didn't mention the year ML but the older models used ATF 134. In the E class they went to ATF 134 FE in the 2011+ time frame so it's possible that it's not the right fluid depending on the year.
Yes, knowing the year of the MB would be important.
I usually work on the w210 series.

Valvoline claims that this fluid works for:
Mercedes Benz MB236.1, MB236.6, MB236.7, MB236.9, MB236.10, MB236.12, MB 236.14, MB 236.15, NAG-1
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
Yes, knowing the year of the MB would be important.
I usually work on the w210 series.

Valvoline claims that this fluid works for:
Mercedes Benz MB236.1, MB236.6, MB236.7, MB236.9, MB236.10, MB236.12, MB 236.14, MB 236.15, NAG-1
Yeah but it's not on MB's approval sheets. The 236.14 is a red fluid and 236.15 is a blue fluid. You really think Valvoline made a fluid that works equally great in both applications when MB makes two different fluids?
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
I agree. Only Purchase Mercedes Branded Fluid.
You mean only purchase approved Mercedes fluids on their approval sheets. The MB ATF 134 is $20+ at the dealer per quart when it's around $5 at the shell distributor.

 
Joined
Mar 25, 2021
Messages
31
Shell ATF 134 (MB 236.14 certified) is semi-synthetic, back label. A Valvoline "ATF Pro 236.14" is claimed by manufacturer as "full synthetic".

Does this mean that there IS or there ISN'T a difference between the two? If a spec can be met by a semi-synthetic formulation, why would Valvoline meet it with a "full synthetic" formula? Can one 236.14 certified fluid be tangibly better than the other?




Screenshot_20210705-142402.jpg
Screenshot_20210705-205104.jpg
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
11,616
Location
MA
Maybe it's better, it's just that in the US, you hardly ever find that Valvoline on the shelf, I guess it's easier to find in other countries. Here the change interval is every 40-60k miles so while the synthetic might be better, the semi is probably fine if you change it at the specified interval.
 
Joined
Jan 18, 2020
Messages
1,747
Location
United States
Shell ATF 134 (MB 236.14 certified) is semi-synthetic, back label. A Valvoline "ATF Pro 236.14" is claimed by manufacturer as "full synthetic".

Does this mean that there IS or there ISN'T a difference between the two? If a spec can be met by a semi-synthetic formulation, why would Valvoline meet it with a "full synthetic" formula? Can one 236.14 certified fluid be tangibly better than the other?




View attachment 62564 View attachment 62565
shell calls are g2/3 blend a semi-synthetic and valvoline calls it a full?
 
Top