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I have a weird one, at least to me. 1994 325is, automatic. here we go: Tranny shifts strong....but...when I am at steady cruising speed, drops out of OD. If I accelerate it goes into OD, then drops out when I resume steady speed. Also it will sometimes go into, what I presume to be a "limp mode" when idling at a light. If I stop and turn off ignition for a few minutes, turn back on, goes fine......til next long idle period. The car has 49,000 miles, and was long ago in a front end collision. I can only assume the car sat for a while awaiting repair, and wonder if this is related. The fluid IS full, but has not been changed. I wonder if the period of inactivity has caused fluid to gum up inside. No "burnt " smell to fluid, and when it has its idle problem, the Engine light comes on. But when working, if shifts nice and strong. Any Ideas??? -K
 

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Since the fluid has never been changed, I'd start with a fluid and filter change. That's 20+ year old fluid in there.

You say the engine light comes on, what code is it throwing? Google "e36 stomp test" if you don't know how to check. Does the transmission light come on?
 
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