Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > X Series > X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)

X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)
The X5 SAV Forum

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-18-2014, 08:35 AM
wcmclure wcmclure is offline
Registered User
Location: Spokane, WA
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 2000 X5
Transmission - 2000 X5 Gear Monitoring Faults

Sorry this is so long... But enjoy the mini novel I wrote!

I purchased a 2000 X5 last December, and have driven it 5k miles almost a year later. I have plunked over $2k into the car fixing various issues (I intended on driving it forever) but now I seem to have come across the mother of all issues recently...

Between 25 & 30 mph, the car shudders pretty drastically, but after 30 it stops... Then right before I come to a complete stop the car downshifts violently (seems like I slammed on the brakes)

I've spent $100's on "diagnostic costs" and everyone says "I can't find anything wrong with the car" then finally went to an indy mechanic that specializes in BMW...

He hooked it up to his smart phone, and ran the car for a couple minutes, then got a 31 & 35 code (or maybe it was 35-38) in any case, he said they were "gear monitoring codes" and likely my tranny was going bad... I asked if I should flush the tranny, and he said no don't do that, that is never the solution for a tranny already showing symptoms and could accelerate the issue.

So, I went to another indy euro-car mechanic (my usual guy, very reputable and knowledgeable), and told him what the first guy said, he said my car has known tranny problems cuz BMW used the 5 series tranny, and it wasn't beefy enough to handle the big SUV, plus added to the fact that BMW recommended never changing the fluid (which they have recently reversed that advice apparently and now suggest 40k tranny flush)

Anyway, he suggested flushing the tranny (and said that is the first thing anyone should recommend) then probably flushing it again a few thousand miles later... So I made an appointment.

After I left, I decided to get a 3rd opinion, and stopped at the BMW dealer... The technician said the gear monitoring codes I am getting is the "kiss of death" and I need to replace my tranny. Then said "you should try to sell it and make it someone else's problem"... But I'm not as immoral as the crooked Russian that sold it to me...

So now what!? A new tranny is upwards of $8k (more than the car is worth) or should I waste my money on a cheaper used one and pay a smaller fortune fixing it? Or just drive the car to death... Or maybe hold out hope that they were all wrong and the car will go for another 100k... LOL
Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2014, 09:24 AM
Porando Porando is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: South OC
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 667
Mein Auto: 2011 335i, 2004 X5 4.4L
I would not go to BMW dealer for the second opinion - I am not saying they are wrong but for them is always same story "never change fluid and if transmission fails - replace it" I would check with other independent an or contact transmission manufacturer.

Second: What do you know abut the history of this car - transmission service specifically? Was it ever serviced or rebuilt?

I would suggest reading more on this as well
This may be a good place to start.

Reply With Quote
Old Yesterday, 08:27 AM
wcmclure wcmclure is offline
Registered User
Location: Spokane, WA
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 2000 X5
Probably Doomed

The BMW technician was actually my 3rd opinion :-( And I've gone to two other guys since, and I think I'm pretty much doomed, here is what they all said:
EuroPro - Spokane: He originally found the "death codes" and explained what the gear monitoring means, and recommending NOT flushing the tranny.

C&H Foreign Auto: "These transmissions are notorious for going out because people were told never to change the fluid, however we recommend flushing the transmission a couple times to be sure, we charge $400 for a tranny flush"

Camp BMW - Spokane: "Those codes are the kiss of death, go trade the car in and make it someone else's problem"

The European Machine: "Yup, your transmission is going out, it's $2500 for a rebuilt one from the ZF factory, plus shipping, plus labor, which will cost about $5k when it's all said and done"

AAMCO: "We can rebuild it, and we've rebuilt a few of them, the last one was about $4,000, but the customer supplied some of the parts"

So it would be stupid to rebuild or replace the tranny at these prices... So now the question is, do I drive it until it dies, or take the unethical approach and "make it someone else's problem" (maybe I can find a crooked Russian like the one who sold me the car and make it his problem... LOL)
Reply With Quote


bmw x5 transmission, e53 transmission, gear monitoring

Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > X Series > X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:21 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms