Details for Car talk Editorial Saturday

VW Touareg comes WiTh ‘sealed for life’ Transmission

BY RAY MAGLIOZZI

Dear Car Talk:
I have a 2006 Volkswagen
Touareg with a “sealed for
life” transmission. I bought it
used with 136,000 miles, and
now it has 150,000. As far as
I can tell, the transmission
has never been serviced. VW
keeps saying the transmission
is sealed for life, but 150,000
miles with the original fluid

makes me nervous. I’m also
not sure about opening it for
service, as it could end up
causing more problems. The
transmission isn’t giving me
any issues yet. Should I just
leave it alone until it dies?
What do you suggest? — Peter
You
can
change
the
transmission fluid if you want
to, Peter, but I wouldn’t. The
transmission was not one of
the major trouble spots for this
car. I can’t remember replacing
any Touareg transmissions. Of
course, we’ve seen only nine of
these in the shop over the past
two decades. They didn’t sell a
ton of them. And all the guys

at the garage run and hide in
the bathroom whenever they
see one of these driving in.
There is a way to change the
transmission fluid if you want
to, even though it’s “sealed for
life.” A mechanic has to have
a way to drain and replace the
fluid in case a repair is needed.
How else would you fix a leak,
or refill the transmission after
fixing a blown seal? Even if
you don’t go to the VW dealer,
your mechanic can find the
instructions in one of the
major service reference guides,
like Mitchell or All-Data.
So if you’re willing to spend
a few hundred bucks, and it

would make you sleep better,
I’m sure you can have the
transmission fluid drained
and replaced. But if it were
my Touareg, I think I’d save
my money for repairs on the
fuel system, the exhaust, the
electronics and the power
window motors. Good luck,
Peter.
***
Got a question about cars? Write
to Ray in care of King Features,
628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL
32803, or email by visiting the Car
Talk website at www.cartalk.com.
© 2018 by Ray Magliozzi and
Doug Berman Distributed by King
Features Syndicate, Inc.

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