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Lexus LS Transmission Fluid Capacity

Lexus LS Transmission Fluid Capacity

The Lexus LS, since its inception in 1990, has been the crown jewel of Lexus’s lineup, synonymous with luxury, performance, and quality craftsmanship. Ensuring that this symbol of luxury runs smoothly involves regular maintenance, of which taking care of the transmission system is paramount.

Transmission fluid acts as both a lubricant and coolant for the intricate parts inside the transmission system. Its importance cannot be overstressed, as it ensures the car shifts gears effortlessly and prevents wear and tear.

However, like all fluids, transmission fluid has a lifespan. Over time, it can degrade, losing its lubricating and cooling properties. This is where the dangers lie.

Neglecting regular checks and replacements can mean that degraded fluid continues to circulate within the system, leading to increased friction, overheating, and, consequently, wear and tear.

Using the wrong type of fluid can have similar repercussions. In a luxury sedan like the Lexus LS, where every component is precision-engineered for optimal performance, such oversights can severely compromise the driving experience and could also lead to significant repair costs.

2008 Lexus LS460

Lexus LS Transmission Fluid Capacity And Transmission Fluid Type

1990-1994 Lexus LS

Fluid Capacity: Approximately 2 quarts for a drain and refill.

GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
LS 400 4-speed A340E automaticTotal fill: 8.7 quarts (8.2 liters)
Initial fill: 2 quarts (1.9 liters)

Always check the owner’s manual or consult with a Lexus technician for the exact capacity for your specific vehicle.

Fluid Type: Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) Type T-IV or its equivalent is recommended. This fluid was developed specifically for Lexus and certain Toyota models to ensure smooth shifting and longevity of the transmission components.

1995-2000 Lexus LS

On average, you can expect around 2 quarts for a drain and refill.

GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
Lexus LS 400 4-speed A340E automaticTotal fill: 8.7 quarts (8.2 liters)
Initial fill: 2 quarts (1.9 liters)
Lexus LS 400 5-speed A650E automaticTotal fill: 8.8 quarts (8.3 liters)
Initial fill: 2 quarts (1.9 liters)

For these model years, Lexus recommends using Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) Type T-IV. It’s tailored to the needs of Lexus vehicles, ensuring proper lubrication and cooling of the transmission components.

Proper transmission maintenance is pivotal for the vehicle’s performance and life span.

2001-2006 Lexus LS

GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
Lexus LS 430 6-speed A761E automaticTotal fill: 11.5 quarts (10.9 liters)
Initial fill: 3.2 quarts (3 liters)
Lexus LS 430 5-speed A650E automaticTotal fill: 9.4 quarts (8.9 liters)
Initial fill: 2 quarts (1.9 liters)

The transmission is an integral component of your vehicle, and it requires diligent care to ensure its longevity and optimal performance. Before engaging in any maintenance or fluid replacement, always refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual or seek professional advice.

Proper care can keep your Lexus LS running smoothly and efficiently for many more miles.

2007-2017 Lexus LS

Lexus transitioned to Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) WS (World Standard) for these years. The WS fluid is designed with improved viscosity characteristics and better oxidation stability, offering superior performance compared to older ATFs.

GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
Lexus LS 600h L110FTotal fill: 5.9 quarts (5.6 liters)WS
Lexus LS 460 RWD 8-speed automaticTotal fill: 10.9 quarts (10.3 liters)
Initial fill: 3.4 quarts (3.2 liters)
Lexus LS 460 AWD 8-speed automaticTotal fill: 11.3 quarts (10.7 liters)
Initial fill: 3.4 quarts (3.2 liters)
2012 Lexus LS owners manual

2019-Now Lexus LS

1. Lexus LS 500h L310F:

  • Gearbox Type: L310F
  • Total Fill Capacity: 7.2 quarts (6.8 liters)
  • Initial Fill Capacity: 1.7 quarts (1.6 liters)
  • Recommended Fluid Type: ATF WS

2. Lexus LS 500 10-speed automatic:

  • Gearbox Type: 10-speed automatic
  • Total Fill Capacity: 9.5 qt. (9.0 L, 7.9 Imp. qt.)
  • Recommended Fluid Type: ATF WS
GearboxFluid capacityFluid type
Lexus LS 500h L310FTotal fill: 7.2 quarts (6.8 liters)
Initial fill: 1.7 quarts (1.6 liters)
Lexus LS 500 10-speed automaticTotal fill: 9.5 qt. (9.0 L, 7.9 Imp. qt.)ATF WS

Lexus recommends using Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) WS (World Standard) for these years. This fluid is formulated with enhanced viscosity properties, ensuring the highest level of performance and protection for the transmission system.

How to Check and Replace Transmission Fluid

Checking Transmission Fluid in the Lexus LS:

  1. Warm Up the Car: Start your Lexus LS and let it run for a few minutes to reach normal operating temperature. This allows the transmission fluid to circulate and reach an optimal level for checking.
  2. Park on a Level Surface: Ensure the car is parked on a flat surface to get an accurate reading of the fluid level.
  3. Shift Through Gears: With your foot on the brake, shift through each gear position, pausing for a few seconds in each. Return the gear to ‘Park’.
  4. Check the Dipstick: Locate the transmission fluid dipstick (often marked with a red handle). Pull it out, wipe it clean with a lint-free cloth, reinsert it fully, and pull it out again.
  5. Examine the Fluid Level and Quality: The fluid level should be between the two notches or holes on the dipstick. The color should be a clear, bright red. If the fluid is dark, murky, or has a burnt smell, it may need to be changed. If the fluid level is low, it could indicate a leak and should be addressed immediately.

Changing the Transmission Fluid:

  1. Gather Necessary Supplies: You’ll need the appropriate amount and type of transmission fluid, a drain pan, a funnel, and basic hand tools. Ensure you have the correct transmission fluid for your Lexus LS model year.
  2. Lift the Car Safely: If necessary, use a hydraulic jack to lift the vehicle and secure it with jack stands.
  3. Locate and Remove the Transmission Pan: Position the drain pan beneath the transmission fluid pan. Remove the bolts around the perimeter of the pan (leave one corner bolt in place to prevent the pan from dropping suddenly). Carefully remove the last bolt, allowing the fluid to drain. You might need to gently tap or pry the pan to break the seal and start the draining process.
  4. Clean the Pan and Replace the Filter: Once drained, remove the pan completely and clean it out. Replace the transmission filter, which is typically located at the bottom of the transmission, held in place by bolts or clips.
  5. Reattach the Pan: Replace the pan gasket if necessary, and bolt the pan back onto the transmission, ensuring an even, snug fit.
  6. Refill with New Fluid: Locate the transmission fluid fill port (often where the dipstick goes). Using a funnel, slowly pour in the new transmission fluid. Don’t overfill. Typically, you’ll replace about 70% of the fluid capacity during a standard drain and refill.
  7. Run the Vehicle and Check for Leaks: Start the vehicle, let it run for a few minutes, shift through the gears as before, and check underneath for any leaks. Check the fluid level one more time and top off if necessary.
  8. Dispose of Old Fluid Responsibly: Transmission fluid should be disposed of at a designated recycling facility or automotive shop.

Note: Always refer to your Lexus LS service manual for specific guidance on fluid type, capacity, and replacement intervals. If unsure or uncomfortable performing this maintenance, seek the expertise of a professional mechanic or Lexus technician.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How often should I change the transmission fluid in my Lexus LS?
    • Answer: It’s generally recommended to change the transmission fluid every 60,000 to 100,000 miles. However, always consult your Lexus LS owner’s manual or a Lexus service technician for the specific intervals suited for your model and driving conditions.
  2. Can I use any type of transmission fluid in my Lexus LS?
    • Answer: No. Always use the type of transmission fluid specified in your owner’s manual or recommended by Lexus for your specific model and generation. Using the wrong fluid can cause transmission issues and damage.
  3. Why is my transmission fluid dark in color?
    • Answer: Over time, transmission fluid can become contaminated and oxidize, causing it to turn dark. Dark fluid, especially if it has a burnt smell, may indicate that it’s time for a change. Regularly checking the fluid’s color and consistency can help in determining its health.
  4. Is it normal for the transmission fluid level to decrease over time?
    • Answer: While minor fluctuations can occur, a significant decrease in transmission fluid level can indicate a leak and should be addressed immediately.
  5. Can I change the transmission fluid myself?
    • Answer: If you have the necessary tools, skills, and a proper understanding of the procedure, you can change the transmission fluid at home. However, if you’re uncertain or inexperienced, it’s advisable to seek the services of a professional to ensure the job is done correctly.
  6. Does the transmission filter need to be changed with the fluid?
    • Answer: It’s often recommended to change the transmission filter when changing the fluid, especially if the vehicle has high mileage or if the fluid is significantly contaminated. A clean filter ensures optimal fluid flow and minimizes contaminants.
  7. What happens if I neglect the transmission fluid maintenance?
    • Answer: Neglecting to change or check your transmission fluid can lead to decreased performance, erratic shifts, overheating, and, in severe cases, complete transmission failure. Regular maintenance ensures a long and healthy life for your Lexus LS’s transmission.

Remember, when in doubt about any aspect of your Lexus LS’s maintenance, consult the owner’s manual or contact a certified Lexus technician for guidance.

References and Resources

  1. Lexus Enthusiast Forums
  2. Lexus Owner’s Manual
  3. Lexus Official Website


About Thomas Bradfork

As a certified automotive mechanic with over 20 years of experience, Thomas specializes in Asian vehicles, particularly those from Japan and Korea. His vast knowledge and hands-on experience with brands like Kia, Hyundai, Honda, Subaru and Toyota have given him an intricate understanding of their design philosophy and technical nuances.

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