Laguna II Auto Transmission feedback...
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  1. #1
    Tadpole
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    Default Laguna II Auto Transmission feedback...

    There's lots been said and written about the much maligned Auto Transmission on the Series II Laguna.... Ours has now done 95 000klms (generally trouble free and very enjoyable)...

    Now I have always found it interesting that an Aisin Warner box as used in amongst many other cars of the period the Saab 9-5 and various Toyotas (Camry / Lexus) can be so problematic in a Laguna.

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    Our Saab 9-5 Turbo wagon has done twice the klms of our Laguna and the transmission shifts perfectly.. always has .... In our Saab I have changed the ATF every 40,000klms and ALWAYS used Toyota Type IV ATF from the local Toyota dealer ... and remember vividly just how much better the shift smoothness became the first time I put this fluid into the car...

    On the Laguna I have used Mobil 1 ATF (Esso Spec) until the most recent change at which time I thought I'd try the Toyota Type IV because I had no Mobil and it was easier to drive to the local Toyota dealer and pick up 12 litres of the Toyota stuff (at under $50.00 oer four litres)

    I took the car to my local Transmission specialst who used a power flush to do a complete ATF change (about 10 litres of the stuff) and from the time it reversed off the hoist to drive home I can honestly say the car has bene transformed...

    It's the smoothest shifting Laguna I have driven ... and in fact one of the smoothest shifting autos having been one of the roughest pre fluid change...

    We are all different of course and we all drive differently but anyone that has a Laguna II should at least think about this at their next fluid change....

    Happy driving...
    Citroen BX TRi 5sp
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  2. #2
    Tadpole
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    My Laguna 2 has done many more kilometres than yours, currently about 185,000 km, so it is more worn but the transmission only made it to 160,000 km before a major rebuild that cost over $3000. It now changes on the reconditioned auto exactly as it did when we first got it. Smooth and progressive until the car heats up to normal operating termperature and then the jerky and sometimes strange gear changes start. It is fine going up through the gears, usually, but then when coming to a stop the change down to second and first are always clunky. It is a little better if I change the gears manually, but still there. I have tried different transmission fluids with no noticeable change to the problem. It is interesting to note that Renault say the unit does not need fluid changes but when you change the fluid it looks very discoloured - almost a burnt brown. I really hope that you have discovered the problem. I was always a little suspicious that the problem could have been the fluid because the auto could change well when the car wasn't fully warmed up and when we used it for a long journey.
    What about those coils that Renault had to get redesigned before they really worked reliably- don't start me!

  3. #3
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    The "jerky when hot" behaviour interests me, as I have the opposite in an AL4 (eg; DPO) box.

    Trans fluid thins enormously once up to temperature, so one would imagine thinner fluid coupled with inconsistent pressure regulation and excess clearances would lead to rough shifts.

    I'd like to know how honest a tranny service you get for $3K; instinct says to me it's R&R plus a rebuilt valveblock, rebuilt converter and a bloody good flush.

  4. #4
    Tadpole
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    I think if you look at the basic design principals of any Auto box the viscocity and performance characteristics of the ATF are fundamental to its operation. Our BX TZi with ZH box, 306 Pug with AL4 and both the Saab 9-5 and Laguna with Aisin Warner box have all been transformed with regular and appropriate fluid changes.... All changes were not simply a drain and refill at home but a full flush by an Auto specialist (while I watched and supplied the fluid). The have a compressed air driven hose and fitting system that injects fresh fluid into the system whilst expelling the old and in the case of the Laguna about 10 litres worth... so you actually see the old fluid pooring out as the new is forced in. This process also removes any internal sludge, deposits and contaminents ... its like a gearbox enema rather than simply relying on gravity and runnign the car a few times aroudn the block to regurgitate the fluid.
    This process can never rebuild worn clutches but it can certainly go a long way in optimising the performance of what's there and restoring the performance to its original design standards... lets face it guys.. would anyone have purchased anhy of these cars new after a test drive if the Autos shifted as poorly as they do after 80; 120; 160 k's???? so what's changed.... ??? The fluid has either deteriorated or been relaced with the wrong stuff... we change our oil every 5k why not our ATF every 20k... even at $200 a time it will take 300000 klms to equal the $3k cost of an overhaul ......I am at 320 000 in our TZi and the box has not been touched and shifts perfectly.... our Volvo 740 witrh 4sp box had done 320 000k when we sold it and the box was perfect... and never touched!
    Citroen BX TRi 5sp
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    Saab 9-5 Linear LPT 5sp Auto
    Saab 9-3 Convertible 2.0 Aero
    Saab 9-3 5 door hatch 2.0 Aero Spec
    Mercedes W203 C320 Sedan
    Mercedes W202 C220 Sedan
    Volvo 740 Turbo HP Sedan
    Volvo 244 DL (1977 2.1 FI)
    Triumph 2500 TC 4sp
    Hillman Hunter Royal
    Jaguar XJ40 3.6
    Daewoo Musso 4WD Auto 3.2; To tow the Jaguar when it breaks down!

  5. #5
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    My Laguna II has done over 248,000 on its original transmission (just checked the km). It's been fairly regularly serviced at 40,000 km intervals,with instructions to use ELF transmission ATF, had the valve body changed early in its life under warranty, but is clunking a bit on downchange and hanging on a bit in early morning (while cold) up changing.

    Main problem I have found is problems with O rings either not being replaced at service, or wrong O rings and ATF leaking from the filling cap, which leads to odd changing patterns when the ATF is low (much like what happens with other vehicles too).

    I had some PM's with various owners, and they have also mentioned the use of the Toyota 1V ATF to improve changing and performance of the transmission. One owner suggested that the main improvement came via the valve body as he claimed the fluid cleared the valve body of crud buildup.

    I've had a pretty good run with the Laguna and because it is used for long runs, it has been convenient to get the service done instead of my usual (as with most of our other cars) D.I.Y.

    I might just try the power flush option, as the transmission works well when freshly serviced, but for less and less time as it (and I) age!! Has anyone else had problems with O ring leakage. I really miss strolling around under the car when it is up on a service hoist and checking closely for my own information as to things that just might need doing further down the track.

    Good that you got to be present while the transmission was flushed, gives you a lot of confidence in the process IMHO!

    Ken

  6. #6
    Tadpole
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    Hi Ken,
    We are very lucky that after far too many years being taken by (some) unscrupulous mechanics we have had a company open two outlets locally that are simply excellent in providing "above and beyond" service. They are more than happy for the customer to supply their own parts, fluids, consumables and even print outs of what to do and how to undertake certain tasks like flushing and replacing LHM or requesting that a tube of Nulon go into the BX 5speed when changing the oil and them providing the labour (and hoist time) as well as very thorough inspection when the car is there. Recently they did the rear rotors and pads on our Laguna, (we supplied the parts) for a total labour charge of $129.00 and that included a wheel rotation... and they charge me $69.00 for an oil and filter service if I supply the filter and oil... its not worth my time jacking the car up and working on the drive for that price.. and they do not require pre booking you just turn up and 8 times out of 10 are out in under an hour for a lube service with a capuccino machine (complimentary) .... but the thing I love about them most is that never once have I taken a Pug or Cit or Saab to them to be told.. "gee mate its a Citron" or "hmmm its a Saab mate dont really work on many of those ...." in fact I took one of the GS's to them once and I asked if they had a problem working on it... and the guy that runs the place said... "no different to a beetle except the motor's in the front and it rides much better!" to which I smiled and though.. finally a decent mechanic!
    Citroen BX TRi 5sp
    Citroen BX TZi Auto
    Citroen GS Series I 4sp
    Citroen GS Series II C-matic
    Citroen GS Series II X3 4sp
    Saab 9-5 Linear LPT 5sp Auto
    Saab 9-3 Convertible 2.0 Aero
    Saab 9-3 5 door hatch 2.0 Aero Spec
    Mercedes W203 C320 Sedan
    Mercedes W202 C220 Sedan
    Volvo 740 Turbo HP Sedan
    Volvo 244 DL (1977 2.1 FI)
    Triumph 2500 TC 4sp
    Hillman Hunter Royal
    Jaguar XJ40 3.6
    Daewoo Musso 4WD Auto 3.2; To tow the Jaguar when it breaks down!

  7. #7
    Tadpole
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    I still find myself a little sceptical that my Laguna 2 auto will ever change gear smoothly under all conditions. With the Toyota Type IV fluid did the gear changing become any more noticeable less smooth when the car was hot? Were those last two changes down before you come to a stop really smooth? If the answer to those two questions are both favourable I almost feel as though I should come to your auto specialist in Sydney to get the work done. It would also stop my wife's constant criticism of the car having a clunky gearchange and asking why we bought it.

  8. #8
    Tadpole
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    Hi Fregate... we must be married to identical twins....you should get your wife to speak to mine about the differnece in smoothness and shift changing.
    You know something makes a difference when your wife notices before you even ask her for feedback...it was a case of "what did you do to my car its driving much nicer and not as clunky".....
    Now every car is different and there are no gurantees of course... in our case the valve block and ECU were all behaving so this must be kept in mind however all I can say is that in both our Saab 9-5 with Aisin Warner 5 speed that ran the factory and dealer spec Mobil 1 ATF and now in the Laguna when we flushed the box and filled it with Toyota Type IV fluid... (in the case of the Laguna over 10 litres) the difference was immediate and remains obvious regadless of running temperature.
    Any decent transmission shop should have the fittings and system to flush, the only issue with the Laguna is that it doesn't have an extneral oil cooler which is where most of the "standard" system connect to.
    I have noticed mention in these forums of a Melbourne based company (Manuel Automatics in Dandenong from memory, I'm sure if you do a search you'll find them) that seem to be happy working on AL4 boxes so these should not be a problem... but for the cost of 12 litres of Toyota Type IV ATF and the service it's worth a shot in my opinion...
    Good luck with it...
    Citroen BX TRi 5sp
    Citroen BX TZi Auto
    Citroen GS Series I 4sp
    Citroen GS Series II C-matic
    Citroen GS Series II X3 4sp
    Saab 9-5 Linear LPT 5sp Auto
    Saab 9-3 Convertible 2.0 Aero
    Saab 9-3 5 door hatch 2.0 Aero Spec
    Mercedes W203 C320 Sedan
    Mercedes W202 C220 Sedan
    Volvo 740 Turbo HP Sedan
    Volvo 244 DL (1977 2.1 FI)
    Triumph 2500 TC 4sp
    Hillman Hunter Royal
    Jaguar XJ40 3.6
    Daewoo Musso 4WD Auto 3.2; To tow the Jaguar when it breaks down!

  9. #9
    Tadpole
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    I have a Volvo 850 with the Aisin Warner 4 speed and first flushed the gearbox at 100,000km, however before flushing I did a drain and refill of the gearbox the week before.
    It's only about 3ltrs but the gunk and muck that comes out of the sump is mind-boggling.
    I would strongly suggest a drain and refill before power flushing the old fluid full of impurities through the valves and galleries of a high mileage gearbox.

    Valvster

  10. #10
    Tadpole
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    I can also confirm the difference theToyota Type IV ATF makes. I was never happy with the gear on myLaguna II 3V6 after I bought it (55,000k's). After reading that theLaguna was well known for poor gear changes (now I know is more of acomputer fuzzy logic problem) I wasn't too worried. But about once afortnight when coming to a stop, when the auto was changing down,there would be an enormous bang. The fist time this happened Iexpected to see the engine on the road. If there was a passenger inthe car they would hit the roof.


    My mechanic (also tranny expert,employed by Mercedes to fix some of their trannies) told me ToyotaType IV was the way to go, nothing else. He changed the oil the firsttime with the Type IV (without a flush, so only half the fluid waschanged because you can only get half out through the filler tube bysyphon) and what a difference, instantly. I almost started to enjoydriving the car......so smooth! But more importantly no more bangswhen coming to a stop, and hasn't done it since.


    Since then, over a couple of years I'vedone the same procedure myself 3 times. I reckon the the oil is justabout all new (but the slugde you mention may still be there as theold oil is always discoloured). It's a different car now, completelysmooth gear changes. It's done 114,000K's now and all is well.


    Next time I'll get the flush done whenchanging the oil. Even better changing maybe.


    P.S. I just finished replacing thetiming belt and water pump last week – the biggest job I've everattempted – but not as complicated as I imagined.

  11. #11
    Tadpole
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    Hi all,

    Can anyone recommend where I should purchase the Toyota Type IV ATF and where I could go to have a 'power flush' and ATF change to the Toyota IV? I live in Melbourne and have a 2003 Laguna Privilege II.

    Also - how much ATF will be required? (I know nothing about cars )

    Thanks!

    Max.

  12. #12
    Tadpole
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    Hi Max,

    Can't really help with where to get a power flush as I'm in a similar boat and will be looking to have it done in
    the coming new year. As far as i know the SU1 box holds about 7.6 Litres. I have done the gravity flush by taking off the filler tube ( 3 bolts, lowest point on trans) and drained out 3 litres, so 4.6 litres of old trans fluid
    remains in the torque converter. This I've done 4 times so only a small amount of original fluid remains mixed with the new fluid. I purchased the toyota type IV at the local toyota dealership ( couldn't find it anywhere else) for $59.50 4litres (ouch!). I've read that other fluids are suitable, such as newer type 5 and 6 synthetics but have no experience with them being a novice myself. So to answer your question on how much is needed I would hazed a guess at probably 3 x 4 litres.

  13. #13
    Member reno1154's Avatar
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    Default Laguna 2 auto

    With 98000 on the clock and only ever using elf I have had no problems, shift is smooth both up and down
    I suppose it also depends on the assembly and the driver.
    Happy Sixteening ... John E

  14. #14
    Tadpole
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    Hey raucous,

    Cheers for that, I'm going to start ringing around in the new year to find a place that will power flush it and replace it with whatever I bring in. The car has only done 91000kms but it shifts between 2nd and 3rd either up or down are terrible and sometimes it takes that extra second or two to actually change - ya know?

    So I can just check out any Toyota dealership and get some? 60 bucks is steep though however if it resolves the issue then I guess it is worth it. I haven't heard about any other fluids doing a good job - just read on here that everyone swears by type IV so i'm going to have to trust that. I will let you know if I find a place that will do it for me.

    Max.

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