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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
No mods in my car.. All service done on time and at BMW.

Writing a letter to BMW NA. I hope that this helps someone else. If anything you need to extended warranty, big mistake by me to not get it.
 

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To OP, is there any mod to the car? If not this seems to be an engine design issue. The plastic chain guide does look flimsy in the N20 engine build video, BMWAG should really step up and get this right, preferably with a recall.
How many other losses like this have there been? I don't recall reading about it here before. Is it really that frequent to warrant a recall? A service bulletin perhaps, but a recall? Plus, doesn't a recall need to be related to a safety issue?

Regardless, there is unfortunately always a certain percentage of any thing, no matter how perfectly designed it may even be, that will fail.
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How many other losses like this have there been? I don't recall reading about it here before. Is it really that frequent to warrant a recall? A service bulletin perhaps, but a recall? Plus, doesn't a recall need to be related to a safety issue?

Regardless, there is unfortunately always a certain percentage of any thing, no matter how perfectly designed it may even be, that will fail.
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A recall can be for safety issues, or can be for manufacturer defects too.

On the F30 subforum a poster said his dealer sees a few N20 timing chain and oil chain failures, so these failures may not be as rare as hoped.
 

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This isn't good to hear. I'm counting the days to get out of 2013 x3 with 58k on it. Waiting on next gen to see if BMW makes a better performing and handling vehicle. If I have to address an engine issue beforehand this may be my last BMW.
 

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Looks like there is a whole Facebook community dedicated to this topic.

ttps://m.facebook.com/BMW-Problem-Timing-Chain-293617047394760/
This fb community was created for timing chain problems for a few engines, mainly the N47; but from what I see the N20 is not part of that

Also from one of the links I understood that all N20 engines built by January 2015 could [potentially] fail due to the questionable design of the timing chain plastic guide. Am I right?
 

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No mods in my car.. All service done on time and at BMW.

Writing a letter to BMW NA. I hope that this helps someone else. If anything you need to extended warranty, big mistake by me to not get it.
It is good that dealer did all service as BMWNA cannot complain non-BMW oil/parts used on the car.

One remote possibility is that the engine is under extra stress, e.g. DD includes uphill climbs. One thing checked by a local indy is the mpg to see if a car is driven hard(including uphill terrains). His explanation is that [email protected] is equivalent to [email protected] as far as engine wear and tear is concerned(for the same engine).
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 · (Edited)
Here is the letter Im going to send BMW NA. Lets see if they stand by their product or not.

RE: BMW X3 2013
Miles:53,000
RE: Complete Engine Failure of timing chain

I have owned numerous BMW***8217;s in my life and my wife and I both currently drive BMWs. I purchased a new 2013 X3 28i for my family from the XXXXXX BMW dealership. Today, the car sits in the BMW Service Center completely unusable with an estimate of over $18,000 to ***8220;possibly***8221; fix.

The purpose of this letter is to express my frustration with my current situation on this vehicle and request for BMW NA assistance to stand by their product and correct this situation.

I distinctly remember the day we picked up X3. There was a loud clicking coming from the engine bay. I was told repeatedly that this was normal for these engines and there was nothing to worry about.

Over the next 3 years the vehicle did have some minor issues and recalls that were all addressed by our local dealer, but overall it performed well and we were happy with our purchase. In fact, I was going to upgrade to a newer X5 or wait for the new X7 for our family car.

Absolutely all of our service, oil changes and maintenance had been performed by the BMW Service Center in Sarasota Florida.

At 48,000 miles we brought in the car for its scheduled maintenance and again complained about the strong ticking noise from the engine bay and now white smoke coming out from the exhaust. There was also an increase in fuel consumption we noticed. Again, we were assured this was normal and not to worry and the vehicle was in perfect shape.

On 5/15/2016 my wife was driving with our 2 young children and the car abruptly stopped giving her a drivetrain malfunction error. The car was a stuck in gear and could not be pushed or placed in neutral and blocked traffic until we could tow it away.

The timing chain guards had shattered and the car was stuck in gear unable to be pushed or driven. After talking to many people and reading multiple post online I found numerous instances of similar BMW X3s and N20 engines all having timing chain failures after 40,000 Miles.

I feel this is BMW's responsibility to completely repair my vehicle due to the signs of abnormal engine noise and white smoke that were warning signs of a defective engine that were never addressed properly.

As a loyal BMW customer I expect the engine not to have a major mechanical failure 3,000 after the warranty expires and only 3.5 years after I purchase the vehicle.

I am hoping that BMW NA will correct this issue. If not I will be forced to obtain legal counsel in order to compensate my losses and lack of a vehicle. I honestly have no interest in seeking punitive damages and only want the vehicle returned to a working reliable condition.

I can say that I have seen over over 20 instances of this N20 engine failing in a similar manner online at www.bimmerfest.com, www.bimmerpost.com, www.bimmerforums.com. I also have talked to mechanics who have seen similar failures all around and under 50,000 miles.

This needs to be addressed and am kindly writing BMW to rectify this situation.

Respectfully,


Going to send this tomorrow. lets see what happens now...
 

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Looks good oither than:
stand by there product
should read:
stand by their product

Really sorry to heard this. I bought a '14 x28i CPO with 46k miles on it just because I was afraid something like this might happen and am now sure glad I did if nothing else, because of the extended warranty.
Wishing you best of luck with your petition!
 

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Read your letter - Looks OK. But it's a bit early to play the lawyer card. Might want to hold that one until & if you get some resistance. You are using email - right? Snail mail can get lost wandering thru the corporate mazes. Begin keeping a detailed log (written) of everyone you talk to (names, dates, places) and things you do. The devil is in the details!

Given the age, mileage, and service record you should expect and push for BMWNA to come through with a "Good Will" repair to correct this situation. Whether this is a BMW or a KIA it is not NORMAL for a catastrophic engine failure like yours!

Your selling / servicing dealer should help support that effort - NOT expect you to carry the ball 200%. If I were you, even if your relationship with your sales person and service advisor is GREAT, get the Dealership General Manager involved.

Good luck - keep us posted!
 

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And cc, cc, cc as many people @ BMWNA & BMW of Sarasota. Even if they're random people.
 

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And cc, cc, cc as many people @ BMWNA & BMW of Sarasota. Even if they're random people.
Your dealer GM yes ... as for shotgunning emails to random BMW NA staff, I respectfully disagree. I'd suggest the senior most executive in customer relations you can ID. You could try to hunt that name in the BMW blogs or LinkedIn. Or, just call BMW NA hqts and ask for the name and email address (maybe even phone number)!

Other email suggestions: 1. cc yourself; 2. Use a delivery and read receipt (easy if you're using outlook); 3. Ask that if the request is made to the wrong person that they should redirect the complaint and notify you what the correct / more appropriate person (name and title) at BMW who has the responsibility and authority to approve the appropriate remedy.

Good luck!!
 

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At 48,000 miles we brought in the car for its scheduled maintenance and again complained about the strong ticking noise from the engine bay and now white smoke coming out from the exhaust. There was also an increase in fuel consumption we noticed. Again, we were assured this was normal and not to worry and the vehicle was in perfect shape.
Did the service invoice document ".... now white smoke coming out from the exhaust. There was also an increase in fuel consumption we noticed"? If so the symptoms have been logged prior to new car warranty expiration and at least those should be covered. Do request the SA/director/foreman to open up a PUMA case and request BMW field engineers to look at the prior documents, they can decide if white smoke from exhaust can be attributed to timing chain issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Here is another email I got from another N20 engine owner that failed..

"I don't know if Florida has the same lemon law as California, but I hired a lemon law attorney right away. I had a similar dangerous experience as to yours since my N26 328i came to a stop in a turning lane and I was blocking traffic. I also could not put the car in neutral and it took several tow truck drivers to figure out how to get it to the dealership.

BMW replaced the motor, however the debris from timing chain damaged my transmission as well. It caused issues about 2 weeks later after I got my car back from the initial repair. BMW had to repair the transmission and torque converter. I finally called my lemon lawyer and they bought back the car. I was still under warranty at this time.

There is a service bulletin out there saying that they replaced the timing chain on the 2015 models. I believe it should have been a safety recall.

You can pretty much copy and paste my post if needed. If you need anything help, I'll try my best.

"Handle"
http://f30.bimmerpost.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1236843

California
BMW N26 328i
 

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BMW tech here,,,,I know you asked me to post on this subject,,,,I read all the post to understand what is going on,,,,,I'm sorry to hear what happened to your car,,,,let me first say to release the transmission into neutral is a very stupid idea and should be changed,,,,as a BMW tech we don't like that design either,,,,,I think BMW made it that way so the average person can't work on it,,,without towing the car to the dealer for repairs,,,,,,on the timing chain cassette they are all made with plastic rails,,,,,I have seen the timing chain rattle but I haven't seen them break causing the motor to stop running,,,,what I'm worried about is the dealer said they saw metal shavings in the oil filter,,,,I'm wondering what the rod bearings look like,,,,because we have also seen the rod bearing go bad,,,,causing metal inside the oil filter,,,,,have the dealership check the rod bearing,,,,writing a letter to BMW is a good idea,,,,I have seen them do a goodwill or split the cost of repairs because you are just out of warranty,,,,I hate to when this stuff happens,,,it doesn't help the BMW name,,,,I hope everything work out for you,,,,thanks for checking out my blog page bmwtechnician
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Update..
After sending a formal letter and calling BMW NA finally got a nice person assigned to my case. So they are officially looking into everything. They said it should be 2-3 days before they give me an update.

So I guess that's progress...:angel:
 

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BMW F25 X3 2013 53,000 miles N20 Timing Chain failure Drivetrain malfunction

Update..

After sending a formal letter and calling BMW NA finally got a nice person assigned to my case. So they are officially looking into everything. They said it should be 2-3 days before they give me an update.

So I guess that's progress...:angel:
Good luck. I really hope BMW NA does the right thing. 3.5 years and only 3k miles over the 50k should def be covered.
 

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Odometer accuracy??

Good luck. I really hope BMW NA does the right thing. 3.5 years and only 3k miles over the 50k should def be covered.
Curious - we know BMW speedometers are "intentionally" a little off. E.g. on my car an indicated 60mph is closer to a 'true' 57.5mph. Wonder if that's the case, is it possible ... not saying probable, just possible ... that 53,000 miles on the odometer is a true 50,245 or 50,001 or 53,953, or XX,XXX ?? ??

:dunno:
 
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