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Oil grades and use. If
you have the MDS system (Hemi engines only, and no SRT-8s), be sure to
use 5W20 oil - note that many dealers will use bulk 10W30 or even
10W40, partly out of ignorance (“they really mean 10W40,
10W30 is too
light!”) and partly because it’s cheaper - and some
dealers know few
limits in cheating a few more pennies from a customer. In order for the
MDS system to work properly, which is to say to switch from
four-cylinder to V8 mode instantly, you need to use 5W20 oil.
Of course if the owner’s manual says something else, follow
- but don’t be convinced by a mechanic or oil-change place. Insist
on the right grade and if they don’t use it...get a refund
and go somewhere else. A
technical service bulletin (TSB) - 09-015-04 and 09-013-04 - says:
“Vehicles with the Multiple Displacement System must use SAE
Failure to do so may result in improper operation of the MDS.”
Shifter stuck in park. Joe Kosiner wrote: There is a problem with the shifter in some 2005-07 cars (especially the LX) that causes the shifter to remain stuck in park whether you depress the brake pedal or not. A plastic part in the mechanical lockout that is tied to the brake pedal breaks and you are stuck in park. Billet Technology sells a replacement part made from aluminum, so you don't need to replace the entire shifter (as some dealers apparently do, at high cost).
Hesitation when shifting. Some
people are more sensitive to this than others...but sometimes it's a
problem and sometimes it isn't. The engine computer automatically
lowers torque when shifting to preserve transmission life. (Five-speed
Drained batteries. If the car battery drains while unattended, check the TSBs — certain stereos required firmware updates to avoid unnecessarily high power usage on standby.
said, there is also a service bulletin covering shift hesitation during
wide-open throttle on the SRT-8 cars.
According to the TSB, when the
gas pedal is floored, the engine RPM may go beyond the redline before
the shift from first to second is made, so there’s a
“short hard bump”
as the shift begins. This happens in particular when the pedal is
floored from about 15 mph; in essence, the computer can’t
figure out at
what engine speed to shift. The problem has been solved with new
software, and only applies to cars built with the 6.1 liter engine
before July 25, 2005. The procedure should be done under
about half an hour.
Also see: “Mercedes transmission woes” in this WA580 transmission article
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