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Discussion Starter #1
I've searched high and low and can't seem to find a thread on changing the oil before the 1000mi service. I have about 700 mi and am itching to get the dino oil and debris out of my engine. Is there any reason to wait until the 1000mi service? The car has been broken with "spirited driving" and "brief" bursts to 6500-7000 rpm and mostly up to 80% throttle and some full throttle bursts recently - basically a motoman break-in. Also a lot of cool downs and down shifts - virtually no highway driving. I seem to remember one guy advocating changing the oil several times during the first several hundred mi - with the first change at just 20mi!!! Also, I'd like to choose my oil and you never know what the dealer puts in even when they tell you "yeah we'll use Mobil 1 if you want us too".... right... and monkeys might fly out of my rear... as they fill the car with Quakerstate swill. - john.
 

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I've searched high and low and can't seem to find a thread on changing the oil before the 1000mi service. I have about 700 mi and am itching to get the dino oil and debris out of my engine. Is there any reason to wait until the 1000mi service?
There is no reason not to wait until the 1,000 mile service. Leave the break in oil in the engine until then, then change it. You won't see any benefit to changing to synthetic until then, and many believe that it could actually hinder the complete break in. Don't sweat it.

Oh, and if you plan on using Mobil 1 oil, make sure that they use the Mobil 1 Turbo Diesel oil - it's the only 5W40 oil available from Mobil 1. It has the additional advantage of having more anti-wear additives than regular "car" oils (M1 Turbo Diesel oil is SL rated instead of the new SM rating - they reduced the anti-wear additives in the SM as they have the potential to damage a catalytic converter of worn out engine that burns oil).
 

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I have always believed that one should follow the advice of the manufacturer of the vehicle, and I feel even more strongly about this with a high-performance, specialty car like the Elise. It is in the best interest of Lotus as a company to provide its owners with service procedures that allow the car to achieve maximum levels of performance and reliability over the life of the vehicle.

That being said, there must be a reason they want you to wait until 1,000 miles. Maybe it takes that long for the piston rings, or other parts, to fully break-in and they want the "break-in" mineral oil in there until this happens.

Mike
 

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Personally, I would change now and put regular oil back in for the next cycle. THEN change to synthetic. I did my Subaru at 500 mi and 1500 mile. Mobil 1 went in at 1500 and ever since. The theory I have heard is that if you change to synthetic too soon, the engine will not break in enough. Either way, I doubt it is a big deal considering none of us will ever wear one of these engines out.

I spoke to a Mobil 1 rep and he did not recommend the diesel Mobil 1. Different additive package than the normal synthetic that was not necessarily a good thing. I cant remember why. He recommended the 0W40 over the 5W40 diesel variety. The diesel version wasnt necessarily BAD, just not the best option.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
There is no reason not to wait until the 1,000 mile service. Leave the break in oil in the engine until then, then change it. You won't see any benefit to changing to synthetic until then, and many believe that it could actually hinder the complete break in. Don't sweat it.

Oh, and if you plan on using Mobil 1 oil, make sure that they use the Mobil 1 Turbo Diesel oil - it's the only 5W40 oil available from Mobil 1. It has the additional advantage of having more anti-wear additives than regular "car" oils (M1 Turbo Diesel oil is SL rated instead of the new SM rating - they reduced the anti-wear additives in the SM as they have the potential to damage a catalytic converter of worn out engine that burns oil).
+1 on the Mobil 1 (formally known as Delvac) - goes in my TDI. The main reason for choosing this oil is the ridiculously robust additive package. Another huge advantage is the that this oil doesn't readily vaporize at high temps - this is why it's the oil of choice for TDI geeks - no clogged EGR systems. Also, I would think the low vaporization would be beneficial for SC Lotus cars - probably less need for an oil catch can. I will wait until the 1000 mi mark and then switch over. - john.
 

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He recommended the 0W40 over the 5W40 diesel variety. The diesel version wasn't necessarily BAD, just not the best option.
However, Lotus is very adamant about not using 0W40 and that ONLY 5W40 is acceptable.

+1 on the Mobil 1 (formally known as Delvac) - goes in my TDI. The main reason for choosing this oil is the ridiculously robust additive package.
And a major component of that additive package is ZDP (or something like that) which is useful for "sliding" loads. Most cars now days have some type of roller on the cam/valve lifter interface, and "regular" oil is okay with that. But our cars use as "sliding" interface between the second cam lobes and the cam (the regular cam uses rollers). The anti-wear additive is actually for the "sliding" loads. The latest oil spec lowers this additive because it's not needed in most engines. Ours, however, can most probably benefit from the extra additive in the "Turbo Diesel" oil. Yes, this additive is not as good for the life of the catalytic converter, but it is for our engine. Since some engines have had failures of the second cam to lifter interface, I'll go for the extra anti-wear additives for linger internal engine life.
 
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