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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series / 4 Series > E46 (1999 - 2006)

E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

View Poll Results: How many miles on your transmission before repairs or replacement needed?
50,000 to 100,000...transmission repaired/replaced. 146 7.79%
50,000 to 100,000...no problems!!! 624 33.32%
100,001 to 125,000...transmission repaired/replaced. 109 5.82%
100,001 to 125,000...no problems!!! 330 17.62%
125,001 to 150,000...transmission repaired/replaced. 81 4.32%
125,001 to 150,000...no problems!!! 224 11.96%
150,001 to 175,000 or more...tranny repaired/replaced. 54 2.88%
150,001 to 175,000 or more...no problems!!! 305 16.28%
Voters: 1873. You may not vote on this poll

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  #401  
Old 09-12-2012, 04:48 PM
wendya wendya is offline
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Location: Southern Indiana
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 50
Mein Auto: 2001 325xi sahara beige
Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmerized View Post
for those who have not changed or do not know if it has been changed, it's best to change the fluid. Most of the problems that come up after the change are associated with incorrect fluid used. In my opinion its best to stay with a fluid of the same type (dino, semi, full-synthetic) to maintain viscosity regardless of whether it is approved by BMW. A new generation of fluid my not be best for an old transmission. The new fluid may dislodge crude built up over years.

Most importantly, do not ever flush a transmission that hasn't been maintained, just drain and fill 3+ times with new fluid, driven in between.

160K no issues. Fluid changed for first time at 135K.
Thank You!
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  #402  
Old 09-18-2012, 12:08 PM
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Brobby87 Brobby87 is offline
The Arch Bishop
Location: Minneapolis, MN
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 169
Mein Auto: 2003 325i, 1986 535i
2003 325I with 141,000 miles on the clock. Real OEM says I have this transmission "Automatic transmission A5S360R / A5S390R" Not sure if that is GM or ZF kind.

Bought the car at 110,000 with no previous transmission fluid changes or repairs.

Still get the slow response from reverse to drive when I dont drive the car for a few days. Ive just completed reading this entire thread and it looks like this is normal. Looking to do a fluid and filter change soon hoping this might help this issue out.
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  #403  
Old 09-24-2012, 01:47 PM
Edwagon Edwagon is offline
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Location: Long Island
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 14
Mein Auto: 04 325xiT Auto
HAVE NO ISSUES: the FRENCH MADE by GM : A5S390R has 71,100 miles , Had INDY do filter , pan bolts, gasket and replace fluid with DEXRON VI ( bmw recommended fluid for my type based ON part # on tranny pan).


Immediately noticed smoother shifts.

Last edited by Edwagon; 09-24-2012 at 02:31 PM. Reason: missing words
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  #404  
Old 09-28-2012, 10:34 AM
latitude39 latitude39 is offline
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Location: US - Colorado
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: E46-325xi; F34-328GT
'02 325xi transmission - no problems

136k miles and still shifting like new.

Replaced filter and ~6 qts at 110k miles - Redline D4 ATF

Drain & fill ~5qts at 125k miles - Redline D4 ATF

Normal driving. Not driven hard very often. No racing or tracking.

Purchased at 17k miles from sane, adult original owner.
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  #405  
Old 10-01-2012, 07:01 AM
CPBIII CPBIII is offline
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Location: East Earl, PA
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 81
Mein Auto: 2002 325i
Knock on WOOD...233,000 and have yet to change the filter or oil. Still runs fine.
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  #406  
Old 10-04-2012, 02:13 PM
latitude39 latitude39 is offline
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Location: US - Colorado
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 67
Mein Auto: E46-325xi; F34-328GT
Quote:
Originally Posted by CPBIII View Post
Knock on WOOD...233,000 and have yet to change the filter or oil. Still runs fine.
That's great. Highway miles? Are you the original owner?
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  #407  
Old 10-10-2012, 12:11 PM
325iPhil 325iPhil is offline
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Location: Pennsylvania, usa
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 19
Mein Auto: 2002 bmw 325i
I am at 236,000 and had serviced at 130,000 for 500.00 dollars. shifting great!!!!
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  #408  
Old 10-10-2012, 03:18 PM
jon-h jon-h is offline
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Location: sAINT pAUL, mn
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 4
Mein Auto: 2000 323iT
2000 323i

I had 178,000 miles when I experienced typical reverse drum breakage. Drove OK forward and in reverse under very light load. There was still a lot of lining left on the wear surfaces when the break failure occured.
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  #409  
Old 10-14-2012, 04:02 PM
gibsonr gibsonr is offline
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Location: Greensboro, NC
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 10
Mein Auto: 2000 BMW 328I
I was having transmission problems about 130K. It was my reserse selonoid. Car would not go in reverse.
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  #410  
Old 10-15-2012, 08:11 AM
GKolitsopoulos GKolitsopoulos is offline
George- 3 Series
Location: Long Island, NY
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 2001 BMW 325i
Issue

I have at or around 160k miles on my 2001 325i. The transmission, according to the multiple mechanics I take it to for check ins, is extremely in good health. However, between the 100k and 150k period, the radiator had to be replaced, and the antifreeze chamber. There are a few more issues, but those were caused personally. As long as you are sure to change your oil filter, and 5 quarts of synthetic oil are put in, every 8k miles, and you always have water/antifreeze in surplus, you should be free of any problems.
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  #411  
Old 10-21-2012, 11:22 AM
fb88 fb88 is offline
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Location: NJ
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 631
Mein Auto: 2014 X1 xDrive28i
2006 330xi 131k miles OEM ATF. Bimmerized - when you changed at 135k how did the fluid look and did it have any build up? Did you notice any difference after the change? Some people says they don't see a difference in driving so how would you know if mechanic actually changed the fluid....
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  #412  
Old 11-03-2012, 06:14 PM
carlosR carlosR is offline
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Location: Flathead Lake Montana
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 2003 M3, Volvo s60R
155K and other than the salmon relay needing replacement, it shifts and runs great!
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  #413  
Old 11-05-2012, 11:58 PM
STREETFIGHTER50 STREETFIGHTER50 is offline
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Location: SF Bay Coastin' to Rocklin. NorCal
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 23
Mein Auto: '04 ZHP Silver-Grey 6sp
My car is approaching 79k miles. I'm about to do the transmission service real soon. I just got my transmission filter kit from Autohausaz
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  #414  
Old 11-06-2012, 10:52 AM
CPBIII CPBIII is offline
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Location: East Earl, PA
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 81
Mein Auto: 2002 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by latitude39 View Post
That's great. Highway miles? Are you the original owner?
80-85% highway miles. Yes, I am the original owner (still).
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  #415  
Old 11-09-2012, 01:43 PM
emrocha4 emrocha4 is offline
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Location: Woodland
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 73
Mein Auto: BMW 330i
I am at 141000.00 No issues at all
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  #416  
Old 11-14-2012, 01:59 PM
ConnieChicago ConnieChicago is offline
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Location: chicago
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 2000 325i
I just want to say you guys are amazing! I come on this site and type in whats wrong with my "Blue Beauty" and you guys are right on the money. Im a girl(not that thats an excuse) Im clueless about cars, but you guys are making me learn quickly! Thanks so much!
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  #417  
Old 11-18-2012, 09:41 PM
hitgirl hitgirl is offline
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Location: Australia
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 2001 318i
Steptronic transmission problems

Hi all. Got my 2001318i up to 295000kms and still running ok generally speaking. However for the last 50k we have been having a weird problem with the tranny. When going up an incline at about 60-70ks an hour the transmission seems to slip from 3rd to 4th. You can hear a whistle like noise and then it goes in to limp mode. Switch it off for a few seconds and it is fine. Drive it in manual and it is also fine as long as you keep it in 3rd until you hit around 80kms. Any one else have any knowledge of this problem. All suggestions greatly appreciated.
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  #418  
Old 12-01-2012, 04:07 PM
Malteese Malteese is offline
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Location: Australia
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 318i
Unhappy

Hi my 1999 318i changes down harshly when i touch the brake gowing down hill some times can any body tell what is wrong just bought it?
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  #419  
Old 12-01-2012, 04:55 PM
emrocha4 emrocha4 is offline
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Location: Woodland
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 73
Mein Auto: BMW 330i
Well if u just got it then there are laws that if u are having issues with your breaks the place u bought it at has to fix it. Check it out!
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  #420  
Old 12-13-2012, 04:16 PM
titoarista titoarista is offline
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Location: Santa Cruz
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: 335i
217K Miles on my 2001 330i - still runs great
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  #421  
Old 12-15-2012, 02:07 PM
Sputnik85 Sputnik85 is offline
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Location: San Jose, CA
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: Steel Chariot
I wanted to comment on the poll results... Adding the numbers up, users who had to repair/replace their auto transmission at fewer than 200k miles was only around 20% (1 in 5)! That is a great statistic. Additionally, 37% were at the 50-100k mark without issue, and the remaining 42% were above 100k with no issues. Good to hear, since I just bought an '04 325i with 100k miles... This poll is great, and is probably one of the more complete/sizable sets of data on the subject. Kudos.
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  #422  
Old 12-15-2012, 02:20 PM
pony_trekker pony_trekker is offline
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Location: NY
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 2,242
Mein Auto: 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sputnik85 View Post
I wanted to comment on the poll results... Adding the numbers up, users who had to repair/replace their auto transmission at fewer than 200k miles was only around 20% (1 in 5)! That is a great statistic.
And that's probably high as people w transmission problems are more likely to post.
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  #423  
Old 01-07-2013, 11:37 AM
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Washburn Washburn is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: NC
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 808
Mein Auto: AW 330Ci ZHP
encouraging numbers indeed - and makes the 'auto-bashing' people (from a reliability aspect) look a bit silly.
I have a few questions:

Now, i see that most of you have serviced / ATF replaced in your transmissions...
what's the BEST method for this? Drain and fill or Flush? and As a 'flush' would not involve changing the ATF fliter,
and as a 'drain/fill' would not involve the ATF inside the torque converter getting changed, should one do BOTH?
(does the torque converter have a plug in it, that one can drain the ATF in it?)
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2005 Alpine White 330Ci with ZHP
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  #424  
Old 01-09-2013, 02:35 PM
Kimaanja Kimaanja is offline
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Location: Atlanta
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 41
Mein Auto: 2005 325i
130K on a 2005 325i with no xmission issues at all.
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  #425  
Old 01-11-2013, 07:56 PM
Mike Gardner Mike Gardner is offline
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Location: Charleston, SC
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 32
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Mein Auto: '01 X5 3.0 '00 323CI 540i
180,000 and now noting something

I have a 2000 323Ci with auto. I changed the fluid and filter twice before but I guess it's time to do it again. It seems as though first gear is slipping so I am going to change out the fluid and filter again in hopes of heading off a bigger more expensive problem.
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