Another poster on here stated that his BMW transmission (auto) went
out on him pretty early. There was a link to another site with a long
list of people whose BMW transmission went out on them...mostly these
were 2000 and 2001 years, I didn't see any older.
Did BMW change the transmission for 2004 years and later 3 series? OR
is it just a bad transmission?
Is their transmission problems also readily apparent in the manual
versions? Or are those OK?
I can live with things breaking, but not something so poorly designed
it costs thousands to fix at under 100,000 miles.
Most (if not all) of these trannies are GM transmissions. I was a
shocked when I realized BMW had fitted their new cars with General
Motors transmissions (made in France). The rebuilt one that was
put in my car is also a GM tranny.
Then I would strongly advise not buying a BMW. I do not trust BMW,
and I think they make inferior cars. I wish you could see my repair
records for this car. Don't make the same mistake I did. Like
you, I've had Japanese cars that went fine for over 200k miles with
hardly more than oil and plug changes. If you want to notch up,
go with practically any automaker but BMW.
For some reason US spec cars used inferior GM autos. The rest of the world
got ZF. Think US spec cars with 5 speed auto are ZF.
I have a French built GM in my 'other' car - a TH180. It's a short lived
transmission too. It failed in a big way at about 120,000 miles *despite*
having had fluid changes as recommended by the maker.
*Support bacteria - they're the only culture some people have *
Dave Plowman email@example.com London SW
A U S made automobile which still has the original transmission after
120,000 miles is living on borrowed time. My 91 Explorer though was still
going strong at 140,000 miles, but my son's 93 Explorer lost that
transmission at around 100,000 miles. So, if your BMW gets tp 120.000 with
the original equipment transmission, it is doing about as expected. I
believe that he had a rebuilt one installed for about $1200. A brand new
one would be very much more expensive.
On 11/20/2007 12:44 PM, kpb went clickity clack on the keyboard and
produced this interesting bit of text:
When I bought my '94 530i (used) I took it to a mechanic, a BMW
specialist, to have it checked out before I plunked down my money. When
I got there, there was a 3-series on the rack with a big cardboard box
next to it, labeled as being a transmission. The mechanic said to me,
"Good thing yours is a stick or you'll be doing this soon," pointing to
the box the transmission was in. (Yes, they actually use a cardboard
box, but the tranny is supported by a wooden pallet.) Suffice to say,
I'm rather glad my preference is for a stick and not an auto.
Rule of Acquisition number 44: Never confuse wisdom with luck.
Do your research. I've heard of older autos going because of lack of
oil changes but other than that I haven't heard much about bad
trannies in general.
You could always buy a renault first then the BMW will seem really
If you want a *reliable* BMW transmission, get yourself a manual and
change tranny oil every 30K miles or so. On my 1990 E34 535i, 115K
miles, I use a good synthetic oil like Redline or Royal Purple.
Similarly, I have a couple of buddies who have over 200K on their E28s
and other than changing tranny oil change every 30K or so, have had no
problems with their trannies.
Changing the tranny and differential oils are easy andhelps keeps the
oil fresh and hopefully removes any damaging particles. Also, a good
synthetic usually makes the shifting smoother and easier. Good Luck!
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