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Hey --

I saw my first new Tundra yesterday and crawled underneath for a guts-eye view. The oil filter was nowhere to be seen (hidden behind the skid plate!!!) and the transmission pan looked a bit strange. Further discussion with the dealer's folks revealed that --

* The transmission is "sealed at the factory, with no fluid change required for the life of the vehicle"

* There is "some ability to empty accumulated trans sludge (clutch filaments, etc)"

As a truck owner that realizes that the transmission is often the weak link in the powertrain, I'm a bit concerned about "lifetime fluid" designs. I typically change trans fluid and filter at 2X the normal duty cycle to ensure long life -- I typically put 200K miles on a truck.

I would think that if the dealer mechanics were working on the transmission, they would need to have a way to refill the fluid. Similarly, if a front/rear seal started leaking, you'd need to replenish the fluid.

Would anyone have any knowledge about this design? Is the story I heard accurate?

Otherwise the truck looked awesome!

Thanks!
 

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Was at the Chicago Auto Show - spent several hours really examing the new Tundras.

Oil filter is indeed behind a skid plate (even on 4x2), near front of engine on drivers side, accessible only if skid plate is removed. It's not a traditional filter, but rather a cartridge type that fits into a housing. I change my own oil/filter, so I always check to see how easy/hard it will be.
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The trans did have a bolted pan that could be dropped if needed. It also had a drain plug in this pan to drain trans fluid. So drain/refills would be very easy.
 

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Kevin, I have an 05 Trundra with this type oil and tranny. Oil filter can be removed on mine without removing the skid plate. Now my question for you, I see how to drain the tranny fluid but how would I put new fluid in, that is where? thanks ted
 

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I was looking at the new 5.7 - it did not appear to me that you could access the oil filter without removing the skid plate. All models had this plate; even 4x2's. I've never looked at earlier Tundra's with the 4.7.

I did not see the trans fill tube - forgot to look for it. I assumed it had tube with trans dip stick to check level and fill from. You have peaked my interest - next time I'm at the dealer, I will verify the 5.7 w/ 6sp has a fill tube. My local dealer has 4 Tundras.
 

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The 4.7 has the oil filter in a hard-to-reach spot, mostly hidden by the skid plate. I dont think th 5.7 is different, but just as bad. The book says to remove the skid plate. I reach down from the top and capture the filter and spilled oil in a plastic bag. My 1984 Toyota 4x4 with A/C also had a hard-to-reach, messy filter change. Toyota engineers seem not to put much effort in this area.

As for the tranny, this also sounds like the six-speed is similar to the five-speed auto. There is no dipstick tube. You fill it from the side, just like a manual gearbox. This prevents overfilling. You can still do periodic fluid changes, just be sure to use dealer fluid, not Dexron/Mercon, etc.
 

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^I owned 3 86 yotas and I always wondered why in the hell the filter was on the side of the block and angled down! I always got oil on the block and it made it near impossible to "prime" the filer by filling it full of oil.

It's almost as if ALL car makers are making it so you HAVE to bring it to the dealer for everything....
 

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It would have been nice if they put the filter on top of the engine, like they did with the 05+ Tacomas. It makes changing the oil a lot easier.

I guess you could always add an oil filter relocation kit?
 

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They do have a way of filling it. How else would they sevice it if it had a problem.

I believe there is an allen plug on the side of the trans where they fill it and an allen plug on the pan.
When fluid starts trickling out of the plug on the pan while filling it. That's it. I think it has to be a certain temp fluid on the trans oil to perform this.

Personally, I would'nt touch this fluid and take Toyotas word for it's durability. Awesome truck
 
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