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#1945109 - 07/07/10 08:19 AM Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 133
Loc: NY, USA
I have a 2007 mazda3 that calls for Mazda ATF M-III for power steering. I also have a 2000 Mazda MPV that specs the M-III for the 4-speed automatic transmission (Ford calls the ATX 4EAT-G, Mazda calls it GF4A-EL). I am about to pull the trigger for the Motorcraft Mercon-V based on Ford's ATF application guide, but just found out from one dealer that they do have the M-III available. I need the fluid to do a DIY ATF exchange. Previous trans services were done at a Ford/mazda dealer, and they used Mercon, which is now superseded by Mercon-V. The prices for the two fluids are comparable, so please help me choose which one is better for the 2000 Mazda MPV ATX. Thanks.

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#1945114 - 07/07/10 08:22 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: windeye]
sangyup81 Offline


Registered: 10/24/09
Posts: 1647
Loc: Bowie, MD
if they are similar priced, go with the M-III

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#1945149 - 07/07/10 08:56 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: sangyup81]
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 133
Loc: NY, USA
Originally Posted By: sangyup81
if they are similar priced, go with the M-III

Thanks for your comment. My main concern is the performance of the fluid. Motorcraft Mercon-V seems to be a better spec than the old Mazda ATF M-III. If the Mercon-V works well in the 4EAT-G trans of the 2000 Mazda MPV, I'd like to use that, since it's more readily available than the M-III, which took detective work to find out (I had to give the part number to the parts dept; when I simply asked what the ATF for 2000 mazda mpv, I got Dexron-III as an answer; when I told them Dexron-III is not longer made, they the told me to use Mercon-V).

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#1945881 - 07/07/10 07:10 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: windeye]
unDummy Offline


Registered: 02/01/03
Posts: 8756
Loc: RI
I wouldn't bother with either. Use a full synthetic ATF like Mobil1, RoyalPurple, Amsoil, or Redline.

With the typical lack of maintenance that PSF's usually see, I'd upgrade at the 1st opportunity. Mercon-V is a synth blend and a step above mineral DexII/M-III.
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#1945960 - 07/07/10 08:10 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: unDummy]
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 133
Loc: NY, USA
Originally Posted By: unDummy
I wouldn't bother with either. Use a full synthetic ATF like Mobil1, RoyalPurple, Amsoil, or Redline.

With the typical lack of maintenance that PSF's usually see, I'd upgrade at the 1st opportunity. Mercon-V is a synth blend and a step above mineral DexII/M-III.



Thanks. Here's the link to the Motorcraft Mercon-V, there's data sheet and a MSDS available. I am no petro engineer, can you confirm that Motorcraft Mercon-V is synth blend?

http://www.fcsdchemicalsandlubricants.com/Main/product.asp?product=MERCON%AE%20V%20Automatic%20Transmission%20and%20Power%20Steering%20Fluid&category=Transmission%20Fluid


Edited by windeye (07/07/10 08:11 PM)

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#1965093 - 07/25/10 11:05 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: windeye]
FusilliJerry82 Offline


Registered: 06/03/06
Posts: 779
Loc: Richboro, PA
I used Walmart Supertech Dex/Merc (Dexron III/Mercon equivalent) in my 2000 Protege which also calls for M-III with good results. Just change it out more often.
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#1965300 - 07/25/10 03:09 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: FusilliJerry82]
miller_cycle Offline


Registered: 05/31/08
Posts: 7
Loc: southern midwest
I've been using SuperTech Dexron VI in my 1999 Millenia's LJ4A-EL (which also calls for M-III) for over two years now, so probably close to 25,000 miles ago. I've also flushed my power steering fluid with Dexron VI around the same time. No issues whatsoever.

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#1965879 - 07/26/10 06:52 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: windeye]
Char Baby Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 8417
Loc: Rochester NY
Originally Posted By: windeye
I have a 2007 mazda3 that calls for Mazda ATF M-III for power steering. I also have a 2000 Mazda MPV that specs the M-III for the 4-speed automatic transmission (Ford calls the ATX 4EAT-G, Mazda calls it GF4A-EL). I am about to pull the trigger for the Motorcraft Mercon-V based on Ford's ATF application guide, but just found out from one dealer that they do have the M-III available. I need the fluid to do a DIY ATF exchange. Previous trans services were done at a Ford/mazda dealer, and they used Mercon, which is now superseded by Mercon-V. The prices for the two fluids are comparable, so please help me choose which one is better for the 2000 Mazda MPV ATX. Thanks.


Hmmm! My daughters Mazda3 2.0L auto calls for M-V IIRC. I'll have to check!
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#1965891 - 07/26/10 07:11 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: Char Baby]
badtlc Offline


Registered: 06/08/06
Posts: 4442
Loc: KC
Originally Posted By: Char Baby


Hmmm! My daughters Mazda3 2.0L auto calls for M-V IIRC. I'll have to check!


That is correct and MerconV is not a suitable replacement.
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#1966887 - 07/27/10 08:16 AM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: badtlc]
Char Baby Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 8417
Loc: Rochester NY
I used Castrol Import Multi Vehicle ATF
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#1967731 - 07/27/10 08:07 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: Char Baby]
chevys10 Offline


Registered: 06/09/09
Posts: 312
Loc: Chicagoland
I have the GF4A-EL transmission in a 2000 Mazda 626. I have changed the fluid twice since new. First time the stealership flushed it with whatever OEM fluid they used, second time I used a combo of Supertech and Meijer brand Dex/Merc. I currently have 15 or so quarts of Valvoline Maxlife ATF that I will be putting in it in a few weeks. I got it for around $3.25 a quart out the door using the Advanced coupon. Seems to be a recommended bang for the buck fluid on the board. I never really noticed a difference in shifting with either previous fluid.

FWIW, the dipstick is stamped ATF M-III or Dexron II, Mercon
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#1967778 - 07/27/10 09:01 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: chevys10]
ItsuMitsubishi Offline


Registered: 06/14/10
Posts: 421
Loc: Ajax, ON
This is almost unbelievable. M-V is not a special specification at all, despite what some heads might say.

M-V as a "spec" was chosen because it can be loosely interpreted as Multi-Vehicle or MerconV, which all Multi Vehicle fluids inherently conform to. Mercon V is nothing special either, it's simply the new Mercon, which was identical to Dexron III, which no longer exists. Heck, Dexron VI (VI presumably boasts it's Viscosity Index, and doesn't mean 6) can be used in most Mercon V applications without an issue, only differing in an Afton Chemical addpack over say Lubrizol and being 1cSt thinner, but more shear stable. I mean, the mainstream fluids are pretty much standardized without being officially standardized, causing manufacturers "make up" their own specification names for the "not using a competing brand's spec" reason.
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#1967783 - 07/27/10 09:10 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: windeye]
ItsuMitsubishi Offline


Registered: 06/14/10
Posts: 421
Loc: Ajax, ON
Originally Posted By: windeye
Originally Posted By: sangyup81
if they are similar priced, go with the M-III

Thanks for your comment. My main concern is the performance of the fluid. Motorcraft Mercon-V seems to be a better spec than the old Mazda ATF M-III. If the Mercon-V works well in the 4EAT-G trans of the 2000 Mazda MPV, I'd like to use that, since it's more readily available than the M-III, which took detective work to find out (I had to give the part number to the parts dept; when I simply asked what the ATF for 2000 mazda mpv, I got Dexron-III as an answer; when I told them Dexron-III is not longer made, they the told me to use Mercon-V).


I'm curious why would you consider using an older, non-synthetic ATF from the dark ages (M-III) over the semi-synthetic product of superior quality (Mercon V) which also was intended to superscede it? From personal experience, the GF4A-EL transmission was one of the higher tech boxes of the time, one which the fluid of the time wasn't up to task for. It debuted in 92' when all we had was ATFs that amounted to kerosene mixed with VIIs & red food colouring and many of them failed because the fluid would break down too easily under the heat of the box. It's 2010 now, I'd strongly advise using a better, current spec rather than searching high and low for a doo doo ATF from ye olde days.
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#1967876 - 07/27/10 10:46 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: ItsuMitsubishi]
chevys10 Offline


Registered: 06/09/09
Posts: 312
Loc: Chicagoland
How about the best of both worlds? A synthetic old school Dex II/Mercon...HA!

http://www.redlineoil.com/product.aspx?pid=50&pcid=9
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#1967877 - 07/27/10 10:47 PM Re: Need help: MAZDA ATF M-III or Motorcraft Mercon-V [Re: ItsuMitsubishi]
3311 Offline


Registered: 07/24/10
Posts: 1116
Loc: Fl
Originally Posted By: ItsuMitsubishi
This is almost unbelievable. M-V is not a special specification at all, despite what some heads might say.

M-V as a "spec" was chosen because it can be loosely interpreted as Multi-Vehicle or MerconV, which all Multi Vehicle fluids inherently conform to. Mercon V is nothing special either, it's simply the new Mercon, which was identical to Dexron III, which no longer exists. Heck, Dexron VI (VI presumably boasts it's Viscosity Index, and doesn't mean 6) can be used in most Mercon V applications without an issue, only differing in an Afton Chemical addpack over say Lubrizol and being 1cSt thinner, but more shear stable. I mean, the mainstream fluids are pretty much standardized without being officially standardized, causing manufacturers "make up" their own specification names for the "not using a competing brand's spec" reason.


Mercon v is not Mazda M-V: http://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=1628444

I saw the above im few places around the net while looking for the correct fluid for my wifes 08 Mazda 3i.
I do agree that M-V is nothing special based on what I cleaned out of the pan. Actually IMO M-V is garbage!! No fluid should be that rancid,discolored and have that much sludge in the pan at 45k (about 80% highway miles, wish I would have done a UOA.

Actually did a drain fill with Castrol Import, then a week later dropped the pan for a filter and used Maxlife Dex/Merc. And after about 8k its working well, actually helped a 2nd shudder that the car would get going up a hill.
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