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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Right after I purchased my 2001 325i in June of 2005 I noticed that its transmission intermittently made a harsh clunking/popping noise when transitioning from 2nd gear to 1st gear, and sometimes from 3rd gear to 2nd gear. I searched some online forums and discovered that this problem was common and could be fixed by applying a software upgrade. When I asked the dealership to apply the upgrade, they said that the upgrade corresponded to 325i’s made after my 325i was made, and refused to do it. After I brought the car back to the dealership a second time for the same problem, they agreed to apply the upgrade. I drove the car away and the transmission still intermittently clunked upon downshifting. I brought the car back a third time only to have the dealership tell me that they could not duplicate the problem and therefore could not address it.

I am extremely frustrated because I can never get the transmission to clunk in the presence of a mechanic. There is just no formula to make the darn thing clunk. The only thing I can say with certainty is that the transmission never clunks when the car is driven in Sport mode. This tells me that the clunking noise is the result of a computer problem, not a mechanical problem. I, however, do not feel that I should be forced to drive in gas-guzzling Sport mode just to prevent my transmission from clunking. Does anyone have any advice? Has anyone experienced the same problem?
 

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I have the same problem with my E36 328i auto, I took it to the a gearbox specialist and he said it was the propshaft coupling, when I took it to the mechanic he said the little dink noise was coming from the back i.e the differential, he told me not to worry just live with it. I will not live with it so let me know when you find out what the problem is.
 

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I've had the transmission clunking problem with my 2006 750 Li. It does it only in sport mode. It slams hard from 2nd to 1st gear, like getting hit from behind. What is the fix?
 

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Same here. Only from 2 to 1 before coming to a stop. I still do not know for sure what the problem is but the software update did not help. It's either the differential mount bushing or the transmission output flange. There is TSB for the flange. Bushing is notorious too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I gave up on trying to fix this problem. My 2001 325i had so many annoyances that I found myself hating to drive it. The clunking noise, the creaking door seals, the loud cooling fan, and the weak window regulators all conspired to create a miserable experience. On the odd day that those annoyances were absent, I enjoyed the car. Those days, however, were few and far between. When I finally traded it in, I breathed a sigh of relief. I drive a car now from another manufacturer. It's not as fun to drive, but much, much, much more fun to own.
 

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rear diff bushing is more than likely the culprit, usually knocks when there is a shift in torque
 

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i have a clunk on my 32i 1999 was told it was diff bush no change argued with the so called specialists that there was no change after they done job, first they said well we done what you asked, i said i only asked for it to be done on one of your mechanics diagnosis, he put car on ramps with another mechanic inside and showed me when mechanic pushes clutch in and out the diff bush was slightly being sqashed he said there's your problem, so correct me if i'm wrong but if thats the problem the new one should have been the cure, now the mechanic i;m arguing with says its just one of the problems i should have been told that at the begining that it may not be the only reason, and i don't believe now they checked everything wouldn't the heat shield have to come off so that you could check all the way along the propshaft from the diff to the gear box, now having been done out of £335.00 went to the dealers and the person i spoke to said i shouldn't have a clunking noise despite the age of car which is what the previous so called specialist tried to say, now i don't know about you it may seem as i made a nuisance of my self and asked the dealer how they conduct their business like how much do they charge will they charge anymore if it takes longer than thought would i get refund if they diagnose wrong they said only charge what they quote me and possible some money back if they're wrong so if i was you ask and make sre you hear them right what they say don't fall for mr nice guy show, i don't think i'm paranoid but if i go with my v reg 3233i and someone turns up in a 2010 top of the range and in a suit who do you think will get looked after better and taking into consideration they probably got more money to spend, and stil maybe only having the same work done, so sorry to go on but once bitten twice shy, be carefull out there, there are good poeple out there i just ain't found them yet
 

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i have a clunk on my 32i 1999 was told it was diff bush no change argued with the so called specialists that there was no change after they done job, first they said well we done what you asked, i said i only asked for it to be done on one of your mechanics diagnosis, he put car on ramps with another mechanic inside and showed me when mechanic pushes clutch in and out the diff bush was slightly being sqashed he said there's your problem, so correct me if i'm wrong but if thats the problem the new one should have been the cure, now the mechanic i;m arguing with says its just one of the problems i should have been told that at the begining that it may not be the only reason, and i don't believe now they checked everything wouldn't the heat shield have to come off so that you could check all the way along the propshaft from the diff to the gear box, now having been done out of £335.00 went to the dealers and the person i spoke to said i shouldn't have a clunking noise despite the age of car which is what the previous so called specialist tried to say, now i don't know about you it may seem as i made a nuisance of my self and asked the dealer how they conduct their business like how much do they charge will they charge anymore if it takes longer than thought would i get refund if they diagnose wrong they said only charge what they quote me and possible some money back if they're wrong so if i was you ask and make sre you hear them right what they say don't fall for mr nice guy show, i don't think i'm paranoid but if i go with my v reg 3233i and someone turns up in a 2010 top of the range and in a suit who do you think will get looked after better and taking into consideration they probably got more money to spend, and stil maybe only having the same work done, so sorry to go on but once bitten twice shy, be carefull out there, there are good poeple out there i just ain't found them yet
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I've had the transmission clunking problem with my 2006 750 Li. It does it only in sport mode. It slams hard from 2nd to 1st gear, like getting hit from behind. What is the fix?
You`re on the wrong Forum....you need the E65/66 Forum....your car is *completely* different from an E46 in every respect.
 
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