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stickyrice
01-15-2008, 12:32 PM
I am looking into a 2008 X3. But, after reading a bunch of threads about AT problem I feel that it is not worth the risk. My wife and I test drove the car and it handle so well. My other option is the Lexus RX350 or 400H. Given your experienced, what would you do?

Andrew*Debbie
01-15-2008, 12:59 PM
Order an X3 with a manual or wait for BMW to fix the problem. Most of the current X3s are fine. But the ones that aren't can be a real problem. The problem is likely not as widespread as this forum makes it out to be.


We love our 2007 X3. Both of us really enjoy driving it. Debbie even likes sitting in the right hand seat and that is unusual.

http://picasaweb.google.com/andrew.debbie/PCD/photo#5134546888953572226


The Lexus is a very different car. It was way too soft for us and leans terribly in turns. We hated it.

iamthewalrus
01-15-2008, 01:09 PM
I absolutely love my 2006 X3 w/ manual transmission, sport, xenons, premium, PDC, etc.

Driving a manual is a lot of fun! If traffic is so bad that driving a manual is painful, then what are you doing in your car contributing to all of that traffic? Get on mass transit!

Also, an automatic is just a computer trying to approximate what you would like to do, based on a limited set of inputs. You, with your brain and your eyes, can see that you're about to go up an incline and a slow car is about to pull out in front of you, so you better downshift to 3rd rather than 5th. But the automatic doesn't know that. The computer is trying to guess what you want done based on a limited set of inputs. And when it doesn't do what you want it to, you get frustrated and annoyed. In our lifetimes, no transmission computer will ever be as good as your own brain.

Just my $0.02

http://home.comcast.net/~jrdailey/x3int.jpg

stickyrice
01-15-2008, 01:12 PM
Unfortunately for my wife, she can't do MT. She can barely drive AT for goodness sakes! That is the reason why the Lexus is the 2nd option, because it is a ladies' vehicle.

MMME30W
01-15-2008, 01:16 PM
Lexus. They are awesome cars.

Andrew*Debbie
01-15-2008, 01:48 PM
Unfortunately for my wife, she can't do MT. She can barely drive AT for goodness sakes!

Never too late to learn. The new X3s have a hill holder. If the clutch is down, the ABS keeps the brakes on for 2 seconds. Makes the car stupid easy to drive.

Terry J. Harris
01-15-2008, 01:55 PM
Eggman - What's your color combination?

iamthewalrus
01-15-2008, 02:03 PM
Eggman - What's your color combination?

This is silver grey + black interior + ash (I think?) wood trim. I bought this CPO, so I don't have the original window sticker.

http://home.comcast.net/~jrdailey/x3ext.jpg

Sonoman707
01-15-2008, 02:07 PM
I am looking into a 2008 X3. But, after reading a bunch of threads about AT problem I feel that it is not worth the risk. My wife and I test drove the car and it handle so well. My other option is the Lexus RX350 or 400H. Given your experienced, what would you do?


Keep in mind - even those X3s that have the transmission issues seem to operate just fine if the transmission is in sport mode.

In the unlikely event you end up with a tranny that does have the problem - you could always use sport mode until BMW eventually identifies the problem and issues a final fix for it.

I keep mine in Sport Mode at least 50% of the time anyway just for the fun of it. :)

stickyrice
01-15-2008, 02:26 PM
Sonoman707- Now, that is good to know that putting the car in sport mode can minimize the trans. problem. Do you this trans. problem?

Sonoman707
01-15-2008, 02:49 PM
Sonoman707- Now, that is good to know that putting the car in sport mode can minimize the trans. problem. Do you this trans. problem?

Nope... mine is a 2004 with the 5-Speed Auto.

Eric in SD
01-15-2008, 03:12 PM
I am looking into a 2008 X3. But, after reading a bunch of threads about AT problem I feel that it is not worth the risk. My wife and I test drove the car and it handle so well. My other option is the Lexus RX350 or 400H. Given your experienced, what would you do?

I can't speak for the '08....yet. But I can speak for BMW. We own 4 BMW vehicles and just ordered a 5th, an '08 X3 with the steptronic tranny. BMW stands behind their products and really cares about their customers. Plus BMW's are the best driving vehicles with 4 doors on the planet. Do they get everything perfect? NO, in particular the electronic stuff can be prone to failure. But BMW's look good, age gracefully, plus protect you and your family in the event of a crash. Because I value performance above all else, I can live with the electronic flaws.

I don't understand what happened with the '07 trannys but I do know from experience that customers get a whole different kind of treatment when they threaten legal action or pull out the "lemon law" BS. If you think BMW doesn't care about this problem or doesn't have it's best engineers working on it, then you don't know BMW...they will get this fixed. In fact I'm betting it is already fixed. My worthless opinion is that maybe some people on this forum would have been happier with a manual and probably should have gotten one in the first place (but maybe their significant other wouldn't let them?).

Andrew*Debbie
01-15-2008, 04:13 PM
Stickyrice,

Have you looked at the 328i wagon? They don't have the transmission problem (at least not at the X3 rate) and can be had with x-drive or 2WD. In some ways the wagon is better than the X3.


Andrew

kjboyd
01-15-2008, 04:39 PM
Eric: I'm on my second X3, yeah, stupid, I know, I was hoping this one would be better; point is- BMW wouldn't do ANYTHING UNTIL I threatened legal action. So your post doesn't apply as often as you might think it does.

AzNMpower32
01-15-2008, 05:04 PM
I think the safest way is to order a new '08 X3. The latest ones (I believe 11/07 and later) do not appear to be problematic. I had a loaner '08 X3 build in Nov. and did not experience any unusual transmission behaviour. Indeed, with 260hp and torque on tap, it's got serious firepower! I really enjoyed it for the day that I had it, and it returned respectable fuel consumption, that was a hair better than my older 2.5i.

The Lexus RX is really aging. I mean, Lexus hasn't even bothered with any sort of facelift or real improvement, besides slotting the huge 3.5 litre V6 from the Camry into the RX350 (but this does not apply to you). I've been in many RXs, and it really just looks and feels like a dressed-up Toyota. With the dated dash and the soft ride. I don't even want to drive one because I might find out how bad the steering and brakes are. However, it does provide reliable transportation and it is quieter and soft. Keep in mind though, all cars get old. I had a '96 Lexus ES and while it rarely had an electronic issue, there were lots of things that needed replacement or repair by 125k miles. The only fluid that it wasn't leaking was the windshield washer fluid!

Here's the interior color combo of our loaner, btw:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v31/AzN1MpOrT2nR/X330si002.jpg

Evlengr
01-15-2008, 05:06 PM
I don't understand what happened with the '07 trannys but I do know from experience that customers get a whole different kind of treatment when they threaten legal action or pull out the "lemon law" BS. If you think BMW doesn't care about this problem or doesn't have it's best engineers working on it, then you don't know BMW....

Eric since you havent been in this position you don't know and are incorrect sir. I treid the nice approach several times over. I have the e mails to prove it.

The responses I got were: "I'm very sorry sir but we can't answer that" or "I'm sorry sir but we are not allowed to put you in touch with a supervisor".

I bought my X3 in Feb of 07 and did not get any repsonses until I made a big enough fuss where they had no option but to address this problem with my tranny. That was just a little over a month ago.

So far I have had several SIB's done to my DME (that is the computer updates that are supposed to fix the shifting problem) and they still havent gotten it right. If that's there best then they are in sad shape.

Yes the treatment I got was all sorts of double talk and excuses.

Everything from all AWD's do that to you are driving too slow.

The head tech from BMWNA corporate looks at it the end of the month.

I haven't given up completely though. I basically want to trade this thing at their expense for an MT.

UncleJ
01-15-2008, 05:21 PM
Stick, if one of your options is a 400h you are in Porsche Cayenne price territory. Go down to your local Porsche store and check out a base Cayenne. The base version is vastly improved with a 290 hp engine. Its worth a look.

iamthewalrus
01-15-2008, 05:24 PM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v31/AzN1MpOrT2nR/X330si002.jpg

Wow, I'd kind of forgotten how nice the 2007+ upgraded interior looks! I particularly like the beige/black contrast. Makes my '06 look kind of low rent. Oh well ;)

Terry J. Harris
01-15-2008, 05:39 PM
Walrus, goo goo g'joob ;), I actually likes your interior color(s) better than that loaner. :thumbup:

Eric in SD
01-15-2008, 05:58 PM
I haven't given up completely though. I basically want to trade this thing at their expense for an MT.

I do hope things work out for you and everyone else who is dissatisfied with their '07 X3 steptronic transmission. If it acts the way you all have described it, I would be unhappy too.

Peace.

Andrew*Debbie
01-15-2008, 06:19 PM
I think the safest way is to order a new '08 X3. The latest ones (I believe 11/07 and later) do not appear to be problematic.


Its a roll of the dice. Most of them are fine. The ones that aren't well, we read about them here.

ProRail
01-15-2008, 06:56 PM
I am looking into a 2008 X3. But, after reading a bunch of threads about AT problem I feel that it is not worth the risk. My wife and I test drove the car and it handle so well. My other option is the Lexus RX350 or 400H. Given your experienced, what would you do?

I'd get a Range Rover.

stickyrice
01-15-2008, 11:08 PM
To Andrew*Debbie, if I have a choice, I would go with a 5 series wagon. But, this is going to be my wife's car and because we are expecting a little one soon, an suv will be better off. The sad part is, I have to give up my 2.0t A4 for it.

A Porsche Cheyenne is nice, but with all the packages it is too expensive for me.

Andrew*Debbie
01-16-2008, 06:11 AM
To Andrew*Debbie, if I have a choice, I would go with a 5 series wagon. But, this is going to be my wife's car and because we are expecting a little one soon, an suv will be better off.

Congrats on the kid on the way!

Well if it's your wife's car, then it should be up to her.

Having had children, wagons and now an X3 I don't understand why an SUV is better than a 4 door wagon or for that matter a Sedan. I'd go for the 3er or 5er wagon or sedan. Why? The are a little safer. With any SUV be sure to take a good look at the roll over and emergency handling specs before making a purchase. Some of them are terrible. (The BMW SAVs are fine)


With a small kid, avoid cloth interiors! The latest BMW Sensetec Leatherette is much better than it used to be. With an infant, I'd recommend it over leather.

dug01
01-16-2008, 09:32 AM
Keep in mind - even those X3s that have the transmission issues seem to operate just fine if the transmission is in sport mode.

:)


This is not true in my case--after program update now the sport mode downshifts very hard--almost like being bumped in the rear---trouble with Sport mode is the 'hanging" in gear when in traffic and not knowing what it is going to do when you hit the gas...The trans/ECU programming is just not working and I think it just takes time for it to show itself---Mine was great when brand new--got bad--reprogrammed at dealer--was great--now not so great.---I just hate it when I read a road test and the testers use terms to describe the transmissions like --silky smooth--always in the right gear--responsive--etc...
I rented a Chev Impala (boring) and I didn't even know when the trans shifted unless I really paid attention--:dunno:

Kamdog
01-16-2008, 09:41 AM
To Andrew*Debbie, if I have a choice, I would go with a 5 series wagon. But, this is going to be my wife's car and because we are expecting a little one soon, an suv will be better off. The sad part is, I have to give up my 2.0t A4 for it.

A Porsche Cheyenne is nice, but with all the packages it is too expensive for me.

Why are you so sure an SUV would be better? I would give the 5xiT another try. Take along a child seat with you, and see if you can comfortably install it, and have room to play around with it.

To me, that would be the best of both worlds.

AzNMpower32
01-16-2008, 10:39 AM
To Andrew*Debbie, if I have a choice, I would go with a 5 series wagon. But, this is going to be my wife's car and because we are expecting a little one soon, an suv will be better off. The sad part is, I have to give up my 2.0t A4 for it.

A Porsche Cheyenne is nice, but with all the packages it is too expensive for me.
Sport wagons offer better driving dynamics and about 90% of the cargo capabilities of a SAV with practically none of the drawbacks. Are you sure you don't want to give the 5 touring another shot?

Havelcek
01-16-2008, 11:28 AM
I highly encourage you to think twice about buying this vehicle, as you are rolling the dice on whether or not you are going to get a potentially dangerously defective car. Just my opinion of course.

UncleJ
01-16-2008, 05:30 PM
Stick, the key to getting a bargain Cayenne is to avoid the options! You will be surprised at what is included at the base price. Of course, you really may not need a SAV/SUV and a 5 series wagon or even the new A6 Avant might be a better fit. It won't be a Porsche tho'! Whatever, Mrs Stick needs to drive the thing first and foremost or you will not be a happy camper if she is not. A long drive over some nasty rough and potholed roads is a good indication of how she will like the ride. Good luck!

Andrewinla
01-16-2008, 05:55 PM
We bought a 2007 X3 and I read about the transmission issues.

We drove a red, blue and white X3 and I looked for the weird shifting problem, but I couldnt find anything wrong.
We had a 200 325i prior and my wife commented its exactly her car but taller.

We have added about 2500 miles and my wife who is less forgiving loves the X3.
Liked it enough that instead of leasing like the 325i we bought this one.

stickyrice
01-17-2008, 12:51 PM
My wife previously (sold it 2 days ago) owned 2002 Audi A4. Let me tell you guys about this POS. It is fat, worthless, and slow. But, it is a good built vehicle. So, she does not want to get into another Audi. She likes the X3 and want an SUV because she thinks that it would be easier to take and place the baby in/out. I may have to try the wagon this weekend as we shop for our next car. I definately likes the 535 wagon, but that it's a bit off my price range. But, for the wife and the baby I know that it is worth it. What do you guys think?

Andrew*Debbie
01-17-2008, 01:27 PM
I definately likes the 535 wagon, but that it's a bit off my price range. But, for the wife and the baby I know that it is worth it. What do you guys think?

Look at the 328i wagon too. It about the same size as an X3.

The X3 has a significantly better lease deal than either wagon. But that only matters if you are leasing.


Dealers rarely have low trim cars in stock. For that matter most dealers only have a coule of wagons on the lot. BMW options are expensive. You can save thousands if you order a car with only the options you need.

Read carefully before taking a car with the rear side impact airbags.



If you are leasing...


2008 BMW X3 3.0si 4WD SUV
24 Month Residual 75% of MSRP .00270 Base Rate
36 Month Residual 65% of MSRP .00270 Base Rate

2008 BMW 328i Wagon
24 Month Residual 70% of MSRP .00270 Base Rate
36 Month Residual 60% of MSRP .00270 Base Rate


2008 BMW 535xi Wagon
24 Month Residual 70% of MSRP .00225 Base Rate
36 Month Residual 60% of MSRP .00225 Base Rate

Evlengr
01-17-2008, 01:27 PM
Much as I think the tranny is a POS --- installing a baby seat is a snap with their "LATCH" clips.

And the height is perfect for putting her in and out. Also the "Leathertec" cleans up very well with everything so far.

There --I said something nice--shhhhhhh

AzNMpower32
01-17-2008, 02:14 PM
Look at the 328i wagon too. It about the same size as an X3.
Actually, I think the 3 touring is noticeably smaller than the X3. Not only is the cargo height lower, but the overall volume of space available is smaller. I don't know if I can even fit my mountain bike back there; in the X3 with the seats down I can toss my bike in without taking off the front wheel, and there's *just* enough space.

My 2 cents is that if you think the X3's cargo area is a hair small, don't move to the 3. Move up to the 5. Try looking at pre-owned if necessary.

The 3 touring is cheaper though. I built a 328iT with all the options you "need" and (none you don't) for just over $40k.

I'm just biased against SUVs of any type though, even if the middle letter is an "A" for Activity. The X3 is a very good vehicle.

claud 3
01-17-2008, 02:24 PM
My 2007 really hasn't given me any tranny troubles. My build date is 7/07. Some of them do, some of them don't.I still want the comming trans/engine update. My son's 06 325i has the same trans, and its great.
My dealer installed sat radio drops out, but they are working on that.
My wife still misses her 05 RX330. She says it was plusher. Those cars are really made to please women.
I tell her that the X3 is the first vehicle she has had in many years(30+) that I enjoy driving.

Andrew*Debbie
01-17-2008, 03:27 PM
Actually, I think the 3 touring is noticeably smaller than the X3.

The X3 is closer in size the the 328i wagon then it is to a 535ix. The 535 is a lot bigger. I'm thinking the 328i might be a more affordable X3 alternative for stickyrice.

With the current rates, a low trim X3 is less expensive to lease than the 328 wagon. Finance or outright purchase will likely tip toward the wagon. If you get RWD, the wagon can cost a lot less than an X3.

The extra cargo height in the X3 was something we wanted. Our dogs wouldn't be comfortable in the wagon. Willow our Great Dane loves the pano sunroof!


Merlin, the puppy on the right was 10 months old in this photo. He has since come back (failed rescue placement) as a 140lb adult. Even the X3 is a bit small for him.

We volunteer with a local dog rescue and frequently use our X3 to transport giant breed dogs.

BMW Bandit
01-20-2008, 11:31 AM
Quote:I don't understand what happened with the '07 trannys but I do know from experience that customers get a whole different kind of treatment when they threaten legal action or pull out the "lemon law" BS. If you think BMW doesn't care about this problem or doesn't have it's best engineers working on it, then you don't know BMW...they will get this fixed. In fact I'm betting it is already fixed. My worthless opinion is that maybe some people on this forum would have been happier with a manual and probably should have gotten one in the first place (but maybe their significant other wouldn't let them?).

Woww that was real talk rite their...

Terry J. Harris
01-20-2008, 12:26 PM
Other than the "would have been happier with a manual" opinion, how absolutely silly. For one, I've got no "significant other" and am the only person who has to drive either my Z3 or my X3. Why throw out such speculation concerning the automatic transmission complaints? Additionally, it ignores the reality of the complaint: the specific AT complaints voiced on this board impair both the performance and value of these $45K vehicles; many, like me, have made the complaint well known to our service folks, without a fix (mines back in for the 5th time in 12 months) and in some instances an inadequate response (it's "normal" for the transmission to act like that). As for the "would have been happier with a manual" opinion: given the history many of us have had with this unresolved AT complaint, the fact that many, like me, both know how to drive a manual and actually love manual transmissions (my Z3 is much more fun to drive, overall, than my X3 even when the X3 AT is acting perfectly well), it makes perfect sense that some of us would be happier with a manual - they work and truly "perform" in BMW fashion.

If you admittedly don't know anything about the '07 AT problem, why not just reserve your comment on those of us who are experiencing this problem with our vehicles?