TO all who are experiencing shift problems with there E39's, reverse or otherwise. There are 2 main things you need to know before asking questions about your shift problems.
1. What type of transmission do you have a. German ZF 5HP or b. General Motors 5L40E get under the car find the transmission tag and read it. The net will show you where it's located.
2. If you have a ZF transmission of the the drivers forward side of the TRANSMISSION OIL PAN there is a colored sticker. What color is it?
3. Has transmission fluid been added to your car FOR ANY REASON, if so EXACTLY what type ATF was put in. BMW oil is not an answer.
It is becoming more and more apparent auto companies (including american manufactures) are no longer putting an ATF dipstick under the hood. Some may say that's so the dearlers will have another way to get in our wallets or purses (EEO had to include ladies). This may be true to some degree. Here's another spin on it. With these transmissions being sealed for life very special oils are used to prolong wear and tear. The draw back is THEY DON"T MIX. Now some will say I drained it all, or I did a rebuild, ect. Unless you change the torque converter during the repair the same oil must go back in the transmission. I can here it now well I did mine 80k thousand miles back with no problems. If so you got lucky. I am of the philosophy the reason the engineers made it so difficult to get into these things is because anyone willing to go through that much trouble probably knew what they were doing, as opposed to go to Walmart, open the hood and dump it in.