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X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)
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Old 04-23-2013, 02:23 PM
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Teemo Panda Teemo Panda is offline
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Location: New Jersey
Join Date: Dec 2011
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Mein Auto: E53, E46-M3, E70, F25-X3

I had this problem too when I had my 2003 X5, they had to replace the whole transmission, I was lucky that there was still 2k miles left before my original warranty expired :X

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Old 11-05-2013, 12:06 AM
X3RCGTOrider X3RCGTOrider is offline
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Location: Oregon
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 31
Mein Auto: BMW X3,850i, 1969 GTO,
Was anyone ever able to fix their X5 transmission? We had the torque converter replaced and that solved the problem for ours. It shifts smooth and great again and the terrible kick went away for good.
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Old 11-05-2013, 09:25 AM
x_l_r_8 x_l_r_8 is offline
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Location: Texas
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 6
Mein Auto: 2004 X5 4.4i, 2003 530i
Same transmission jerk here on our 04 X5 4.4i with 130K. I was about to change out the trans fluid and filter to see if it would help but my mechanic says don't do it. He's a BMW master certified mechanic and says that if the fluid has not been flushed on a regular basis it contains tiny fragments of the clutch plates. If replaced the transmission could start slipping needing a $6K replacement. Any thoughts?
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Old 11-05-2013, 10:22 AM
channingd channingd is offline
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Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: X5
My 2004 X5 4.4 did the same thing. Only when the tranny was cold though. Went away as it warmed up. Simple fluid flush and replacement with new filter. Drove like new, right until by wife rear ended a full size pickup and totaled it.
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Old 11-07-2013, 05:45 PM
Kappy21 Kappy21 is offline
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Location: Vermont
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: E53 X5
This is a fluid pressure problem within the transmission or in the torque converter (which is external to the transmission but connected to it). It could be simply dirty fluid or a clogged filter which restricts fluid flow within the transmission and a fluid and filter change will fix this. If there is a dirt clog in the valve body, you probably need a replacement valve body since it's very hard to find someone who will rebuild a valve body on a ZF. If it's the torque converter, the torque converter should be replaced before the slamming damages the transmission clutches. The automatic transmission depends on free flow of the transmission fluid through the valve body so that the proper gear can be selected at the proper time, all of which is controlled by fluid pressure. When there is a small blockage, the transmission can't change gears in alignment with engine speed and you get the slamming. Slamming is a different problem than slipping which would indicate that the friction surfaces on the clutch packs are worn and heading to failure.

It seems that new car dealers, particularly the European brands, view transmissions much light bulbs: If it doesn't work right, screw in a new one. They don't seem to have much interest in what happens inside the transmission case or any idea how to fix, or even diagnose, an internal transmission problem. There must be some economic or political reason for this lack of knowledge or interest. I don't know what it is. The best bet is to find a really good transmission specialty shop that has experience with ZF products. A fluid and filter change is probably only a couple of hundred dollars and it's important that it's done correctly since some ZF transmissions need to be filled according to the temperature of the fluid which is monitored as the fluid is added.
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Old 11-07-2013, 10:04 PM
X3RCGTOrider X3RCGTOrider is offline
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Location: Oregon
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Mein Auto: BMW X3,850i, 1969 GTO,
We did have the valve body rebuilt as well at first thinking that was the reason for the transmission issues ( Very expensive to have done) it was found that a tube that flows the fluid through the transmission had disintegrated and was causing improper flow which could of been causing some of the issues. The transmission changed afterwards by making the problems different or more noticeable. It was easier for the kicks to happen with the downshift and there some other oddities happening too with other shifts. After we got the torque converter replaced, all those problems were gone.
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Old 11-08-2013, 08:06 AM
tolgatt tolgatt is offline
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Location: Calgary,AB
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 33
Mein Auto: 2005 BMW X5 4.4 Sport
of course my 2005 4.4 X5 has this issue as well , and I am totally used to not getting it kicked hard by now . I make sure I come to a complete stop , you can also feel at the very last second the gear goes down to first with a slight vibration and then I start accelerating again . Am I happy with it ? absolutely not !
I am still trying to make up my mind if I should get the fluid and filter changed . It doesnt bother me that much so I would pay thousands to get valve body or torque converter fixed.

I forgot who mentioned on earlier posts but yes I think this is a very very very common problem with an expensive fix and BMW should fix this issue at their own cost for whoever takes their cars to their services that has complaints.
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:07 AM
roym01 roym01 is offline
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Location: Bolton
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 10
Mein Auto: 2005 X5 4.4
Same issue with my 2005 4.4.

Rolling stop, acceleration, slam! Very infrequent, but that was probably due to the fact that I quickly learned that if I came to a complete stop it would not slam.

Truck has 100000 miles and my indie was hesitant to change the fluid/filter. Same advice about not changing the fluid, "if over 100000 and never been changed, don't change".

I changed anyway, fluid and filter but no flush. Couldn't help myself as nobody can convince me that leaving the original fluid in there forever is a good thing. Indie says fluid looked good and filter was dirty. After a week no slams, but not really sure if permanently fixed as now I am so used to coming to a complete stop that I do not remember not to.

I will update over the next few weeks for those interested.
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:39 PM
DonJuan DonJuan is offline
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Location: Ruimsig, Gauteng, South Africa
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: X5 4.4i
Transmission "Kick-down"

Hi Guys,
Been there done it with my X5 4.4i 2005! I had a major problem with "shift-shock" on my X5 especially on the "kick-down"
After replacing the transfer case, various software updates etcetera, I gave up.
Until a very knowledgeable mechanic asked if the "lifetime" gearbox oil had been changed at 80 000 km - which BMW hadn't done while my car was still under Motor Plan.
Anyway, I changed the gearbox oil and the problem disappeared!!!
NNB: With the oil change you'll need 12 litres of the costly oil. You do a 6 litre change, cycle the gearbox thoroughly and replace the remaining 6 litres
This should be the cure for most 4.4i
Depending on the age of your vehicle and the wear on the clutch plates this could also be the cause in some cases.

Last edited by DonJuan; 06-01-2014 at 04:01 PM.
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