How To Change PDK Oil on a Porsche Panamera AWD Models (2010-2016)

Maintenance Interval 6 Years or 60,000 Miles (90,000 Kilometers)
Estimated Dealer Cost $800
Estimated Independent Mechanic Cost $600
Estimated DIY Cost $350
Repair Time 1.5 hours
DIY Difficulty Medium

Changing the oil in your PDK transmission is important to keep your drivetrain smooth. Over time, the oil loses its critical properties, so regular replacement of the oil is essential. The PDK transmission is a combination of a manual and automatic transmission. As a result, the transmission uses both manual transmission oil and automatic transmission fluid (ATF). This is a source of confusion for many Porsche owners because Porsche calls for both a “PDK transmission oil change” and a “PDK clutch oil change”. This article is on the PDK transmission oil, which uses manual transmission fluid. You DO NOT want to put ATF fluid into the wrong part of the transmission.

Changing the transmission oil is not a complicated job, and it falls into the category of easy do-it-yourself procedures as long as you have the proper tools and the ability to get your vehicle off the ground safely. However, to get an overview, check out this PDK fluid change DIY from the YouTube channel, P – Tech.  While this is for Macan, the procedure is very similar. Detailed steps, parts, and tools required can be found below. Big thanks to user HP41 for allowing us to use his photos for this article.

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Torque Specs & Fluid Capacities:

Oil drain plug: 11 ft-lbs
Oil inspection plug: 26 ft-lbs
Transmission oil capacity: 9 liters

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Step 1: Prepare your vehicle and work area

  • Start with a cold engine, so you can fill your PDK clutch oil to the correct level.
  • Put on eye protection and gloves.
  • Park your car on a level surface.
  • Gather parts and tools.

Step 2: Raise your vehicle off the ground

  • To give yourself enough clearance to work, safely raise your vehicle using a lift or jack and jack stands.
  • NEVER rely on a jack to keep your car up; use jack stands to safely support your vehicle.
  • To raise your vehicle on jack stands, as shown in the picture, lift each corner with a JACK using LIFTING POINT A; then  and place the JACK STAND on LIFTING POINT B.
  • While raising your vehicle on jack stands, be sure to use wheel chocks to prevent your car from rolling.
  • Once your car is on jack stands, give your car a hard shove to make sure it is secure.
  • ENSURE YOUR CAR IS LEVEL! This is essential to ensure the correct fluid level.
  • Note: If your car has air suspension, disable the leveling system by starting the vehicle and holding the “high level” control for 10 seconds; an indicator will appear in the gauge cluster letting you know the leveling system has been disabled. Failure to disable auto-leveling can result in suspension damage.
Raise your vehicle off the ground

Step 3: Remove the underbody panel covering the transmission

  • Locate and remove 20 T25 Torx screws that hold the underbody panel and then slide the panel out of the way

Step 4: Remove the PDK oil fill plug

  • As shown in the picture, locate the PDK oil fill plug which is on the rear side of the transmission and can be seen in between the two exhaust pipes.
  • Use a ratchet, appropriate length extension, universal joint, and an 8mm hex socket to break loose and remove the plug. 
  • If you cannot get the fill bolt off, STOP and do not drain the fluid or you will be unable refill the transmission oil.
  • If you can remove it, proceed to the next step.
 Remove the PDK oil fill plug

Step 5: Drain the transmission oil

  • Locate the oil drain plug at the bottom, right-hand side of the black transmission pan as shown in the picture.
  • Break the drain plug loose using a ratchet and a T30 Torx  socket, but don’t remove it yet. 
  • Position the oil drain pan underneath the drain plug, then remove the drain plug completely; be sure to catch the drain plug before it falls into the drain pan.
  • Let the oil drain for at least 15 minutes to make sure the transmission cooler drains.
  • Reinstall a NEW oil drain plug and seal and torque it to 11 ft-lbs using a torque wrench.
Drain the transmission oil

Step 6: Fill in the fresh transmission oil

  • As shown in this video from BleepinJeep, use a fluid transfer pump to add new PDK oil via the fill bolt hole; while the oil capacity is 9 liters, you will only be able to get around 8 liters in initially.
  • Keep filling the transmission until oil spills out of the fill hole.
  • Remove the pump hose and wipe of the over spilled oil.

Step 7: Ensure PDK oil is filled to the correct level

  • With the car still in the air, start the car and shift the gearbox lever through the R-N-D while pausing for one second at each position; then put the gear lever into Park.
  • Connect a PIWIS diagnostic tool to the vehicle and allow the clutch oil to get between 30 and 40°C; you can either determine this using the PIWIS tool or by measuring the temperature of the clutch oil that drips out using an infrared thermometer. 30-40°C will feel warm to the touch.
  • Once the clutch oil is between 30-40°C, use the PIWIS to engage “Fill Mode”.
  • If clutch oil does not drip out during “Fill Mode”, add more oil until it does.
  • Once the oil stops dripping out, you’ve reached the correct level.
  • Re-install a NEW clutch oil fill bolt and torque it to 26 ft-lbs.
  • Note: If you don’t have a PIWIS, don’t worry about “fill mode”. Just follow the above steps, but use an infrared thermometer to measure the temperature of the oil

Step 8: Reinstall everything in reverse

  • Ensure there are no fluid leaks.
  • Re-install the underbody panels and just hand tighten the fasteners; they don’t need to be torqued much.
  • Lower your vehicle back on the ground.
  • Clean up your work area and put away your tools. You’re all done!

10 comments on “How To Change PDK Oil on a Porsche Panamera AWD Models (2010-2016)

  1. I am still confused. I purchased 9 liters of the Pentosin FFL-3…And I assume this is the transmission fluid. But at the top you say we are changing the transmission oil which uses manual transmission fluid. So is this FFL-3 a manual transmission fluid.?
    Also, where does the other fluid go? the clutch fluid. I read somewhere that is .4liter…it is very confusing online to which is which.

    • ecarguidesllc says:

      Great question. Yes, the Pentosin is transmission oil specific for the PDK. Let us check on the clutch. Thanks for your question!

    • If you added more than 9L of cold ATF, then the measurement will be wrong. Did you allow the transmission fluid to head up to the correct temperature for measuring the level?

    • The kit for the pan, pan gasket and internal filter kit is about $500 on the trusted parts supply websites. Some owners delay doing the pan, gasket and filter replacement, if they have done the drain and fill service regularly.

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