I have a car with 198,000 miles. The automatic transmission fluid has a brown red tinted color to it. I'm not sure if the transmissionn fluid has ever been changed but it is not black. Is that a good indication that the ATF has been changed at least once?
It probably has been changed. Here is the problem with changing the transmission fluid. On a normal car, you should change it every 40,000 miles or so. So if you don’t, and you go 198,000 miles and never change it, then a fresh change can sometimes make it slip. It’s kind of a gamble. So if you buy a car new, change it every 40,000 miles, and you won’t have that problem. In your case, if it shifts okay, I personally wouldn’t do it, with that kind of mileage. Because you would take some kind of a gamble changing it now.