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ZF 8HP Gearbox.

Rich Askew

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Hi all,

My Jaguar is relatively new to me, bought in late June. It now has 90k miles on the clock and a full Jaguar Service History. The only thing I have no record of is any servicing to the automatic gearbox - the 8 speed ZF.

I know that the documentation mentions that it's a 'lifetime' sealed unit but the lifetime of my car might well be until the gearbox fails and it's too expensive to replace. Has anyone had any experience of how long these gearboxes last and / or what the servicing costs might be?

ZF on their website / You Tube channel recommend changing the oil (at least) but it doesn't seem to be part of Jaguar's planned maintenance. I believe that the change needs a new sump / filter assembly which is somehing I'm quite happy to pay for but some advice from any of you with experience would be great.

The gearbox itself seems fine so far, changes are smooth and barely noticeable. It's just my thinking from many years of performance maintaining (not on Jaguars or cars) that preventative maintenance is better, and often less expensive, than a rebuild or replacement after a failure!

Best regards,


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Hi Rich,

I just had my gearbox oil changed at 68K, it is recommended to do this at the 65-100K mark, mine didn't really need it either, it was more of a preventative measure.

I actually called and spoke with a ZF engineer as some people were suggesting it was best to flush and replace the oil but the ZF engineer said they don't advise to flush as this can loosen some debris and cause problems, it's best just to drain and replace the oil but he did say it is important to change the oil and not sealed for life.

I had mine done by E&E in Milton Keynes, if I remember correctly it was about £450.

Hope this helps,


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  • 1 month later...

Hi Dom,

I found a local specialist (30 miles or so away) who do this type of work regularly. Same price as yours so saved a trip to MK or Bristol!

Initially I wondered what I'd done as afterwards, when cold, 1st / 2nd and 2nd / 3rd changes seemed to slip and then snatch into gear, plus there was a surge going from 5th to 6th. The company asked me to bring it back for a full day, which was supposed to be Wednesday. Got in it last Sunday and couldn't select any gears, dashboard lit up in yellow like a Christmas tree. Car on a transporter Monday morning and work cancelled for three days while I thought of ££££ signs flashing down the tubes ...

Cut a long story short, they called on Wednesday and picked me up to collect it again. They'd originally mentioned that flushing it might cause some debris to loosen but their road test had been fine. They changed the filter / sump for a second time, full change of fluid, loads of diagnostics and clearing of alerts - they also reset the 'adaptation' settings this time. Very helpful with explanations of what had been done, copies of diagnostic sheets to google and 'no charge' for the recovery or secondary work completed.

I'm still feeling my way with the car again but the last couple of days has been absolutely fine. Actually, better than that. No slips / snatches or surges in any gear and all the changes have been smooth throughout the range. I'd thought it was a slick, quiet gearbox beforehand but it's noticeably smoother now.

Am I glad I had it done? Too soon to say for now but the signs are promising. I'd have preferred not to have the week / ten days of wondering what the hell was going on but I suppose I'm bound to learn lessons with a new car (to me) and not having had an automatic before.

Just got to get a slight crimp in the wing sorted out from where the recovery guy was a bit clumsy with the winch now ...


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Hi Richard,

Sounds like an ordeal indeed, I can't think what might have happened the first time round, mine was faultless, they should have reset the adaptation the first time.

When i had mine done they did tell me to take it easy for the first 500 miles, no kick downs etc. but now it is as smooth as silk.

Hopefully everything should be all good for you now, it's more about prevention that fixing, if it gets to the point of needing fixing then you're looking at ££££s.

Best wishes,


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