Identification of the vehicle and unit you are working on is the beginning of doing the job correctly. It is getting increasingly difficult to obtain the correct information and even to locate a service manual or Internet site.
ZF is one of the world’s leading powertrain manufacturers. One of its divisions, in Saarbrücken, Belgium, specializes in producing automatic transmissions for cars.
When you consider working on a ZF automatic, your starting point should be the tag, which leads you to the information and application required for the unit (see Figure 1).
One of the difficult problems facing most transmission shops is the identification of manual transmissions. To be able to order parts and create a valid sales quote for a customer, the shops have to know what they are working on. Stick-shift transmissions comprise about 20% of the market; so most shops are very familiar with automatic units and have difficulty with manual-trans identification. The following guide provides some basic information to lead you in the right direction as to which transmission you are working on. Space limitations do not allow us to list every manual transmission you may encounter, but those listed here are the most-common units in domestic trucks and sport/utility vehicles.