Recently a comparison test was performed on three different OEM filters suitable for use in the BMW M54 Engine.
OEM or Original Equipment Manufacturer is defined as any company that has made an Original Equipment truck part, or, the company that has manufactured your truck. This is a relatively broad description, and OEM doesn’t always necessarily mean that it is something *good*.
For this test all the filters are high quality, all are made in Western Europe – although the Mann filters are now made in Mexico – and they are all made by the main three companies that produce filters for BMW.
PART – Oil Filter (BMW M54 engine)
BRANDS – Hengst, Mahle and Mann
The filters are sold as *oil filter kits* which is because they all come with an O-ring for the oil filter housing cap and a crush washer for the drain plug. With the O-rings and crush washers, the Mann and Mahle filters were very similar, while the Hengst had a white O-ring, it also seems smoother and slightly better quality than the other two. The great thing about the white O-ring is you can see how it is sitting on the oil filter housing cap. Some people push the O-ring right to the top of the cap rather than letting it sit in the groove it’s meant to sit in, the O-ring can also work its way out of the grove even with the cap tightened down, so with the white O-ring, you can see where it is at all times.
This is the filter you will receive if you go to a BMW dealership and ask for an oil filter. This filter is supposed to be made in Mexico, although on the box and on the filter, it was clearly stamped *Germany*. Of course, for testing purposes where it is made doesn’t really matter. While, this filter costs Mann less to produce in Mexico, than it costs Mahle and Hengst to make their filters in Austria and Germany, it is not any cheaper to buy.
The caps in use on the Mann filter are made from a hard urethane foam and the gasket is a paper thin felt, when removed from the oil filter housing it fits snuggly and doesn’t let oil through, while it does its job it certainly looks inferior to the other two, with the seam wavy and crude.
In part two we will continue with our comparison looking at the Hengst and Mahle oil filters.