2000 BMW X5 BMW X5 4.4i V8 (03/2000) problems with transmis

Tiny
MRTHEPERO
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 BMW X5
Transmission problem
2000 BMW X5 V8 Four Wheel Drive Automatic 118k miles

I have an issue with recently bought X5 4.4i V8 (03/2000). Now it is appearing as a series of symptoms spread over several components. My biggest concern is transmission.
Under certain conditions (e.g. when slowing down on lights or drawing in the jam, at the very last moment before the car stops completely) it is unecessarily downshifting 3>2 or even 3>2>1). Sometimes it's quite roughly, especially in D - Drive automatic shift program. It is less appearing in S or M mode and I can't remember it ever happened in the first 10 minutes after the cold start. On the contrary, my suspicion is it was worsening in due proportion with raising temperature in the engine compartment (although engine coolant thermometer always remained in a propper position).
The other, for me less annoying symptoms, are e.g. false check control and onboard computer messages (check rear foglights) or sudden PDC malfunctions (starts to operate when shouldn't, with confusing PDC tone soundings).
Shortly I've acquired the car, I've experienced a few other issues, which maybe were a predecessors of my today's troubles. It began with several CHECK COOLANT LEVEL messages and culminated when the shaft of the ventilator fan got broken), which was resolved FoC at the BMW repair shop, where I bought it (whole ventilator and cooler radiator should have been replaced). Disruptions continued shortly I took it back and I observed the first strange behaviour of the transmission in low speeds. It was clearly unussual and I've been "awarded" even with TRANS.FAILSAFE PROG and LEVEL CONTROL INACTIVE messages and gave it back to the repair shop.
Now the car came back with status "we tried everything - replaced the instrument cluster, re-loaded every piece of SW and applied all required fixes, verified it's all in most current versions and from standard diagnostic tools we can't getn neither any sign of problem, nor any relevant information or indications where a hidden cause of the problems could lie, now we can only wait until BMW in-depth car IT gurus will be available (promised for mid of January 2010) to let them discover and resolve the voo-doo..."
After I did a bit of research over the web, my feeling is there is something wrong with the cooling, the sensors, or the way involved systems exchange (sends/interprets) the temperature related data. I also believe my case has a lot in common with the problems described by a guy using nick moneytree, where the feedback was provided by Dr. Hagerty ("2002 BMW X5 Transmission shifting problem v. specfic" started at Sat May 24, 2008 5:32 am, link: http://www.2carpros.com/forum/previous-vt137969.html?postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0&sid=da8ad4ccd797283314826d84012596ba) and many other unfortunates with the same or similar long lasting problems with BMW automatic transmission I found on the forums and discussions...
I will really appreciate any advice or suggestion. As I can't believe such issues were not resolved already, a link or direction to required information/source dedicated to the first generation of X5 4.4i V8 model would serve me the best. :-)
Many thanks in advance!
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Sunday, December 13th, 2009 AT 3:05 PM

4 Replies

Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
  • MEMBER
I had to go back and re-read the previous post. He never followed through! I have had similar issues with the X5 4.4l and have usually been able to decipher the issue, when the diagnostic is comprehensive. What BMW shop was it bought from?
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Tuesday, December 15th, 2009 AT 8:26 PM
Tiny
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Hi, thanks for your feedback! I was also surprised, that "moneytree" did not come back with any conclusion after he's spent that long on posting about his issue.
The car was purchased from a company, which sells and repairs used BMWs and I believe I can have any diagnostics detail you may want. I haven't ask them for the detailed report, since with my level of insight I could only make limited use of it's interpretation, but as I understood, there weren't any particluar messages (codes) indicating the cause, just the effects - that (down)shift has been rough.

My personal assumption is that the issue has something to do with the temperature (pressure). Either there is a "physical" problem (something is overheating, which then directly results in transmission malfunction, or it triggers something else, which affects the way transmission works, all under certain circumstances - once the engine reaches the operational temperature), or the problem is completely "virtual", e.G. Although the temperature stays within the limits, which seems to be the case from all diagnostic attempts, there is some error message either generated or interpreted in a wrong way, which consequently triggers bad behavior of the transmission in Drive regime. Again, in Sport or Manual mode it is shifting smoothly in every direction/revs, manual downshifting 3>2 as well as 2>1 without any sign of delay, slip, or any other hesitation.
In this connection - is the 3rd gear, when the car is still, OK in the Manual mode? I.E. Shouldn't it go down to 2nd as in Drive or Sport mode (at least I believe it downshifts to 2nd when deccelerating/starts accelerating on 2nd)?
As I am reading more and more about transmission issues with BMW, I feel less concerned, since driving it in M, which is my way, makes the car again "error-less"! :-) Awaiting your feedback, thanks!
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Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 AT 2:28 PM
Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
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The information provided to Moneytree was designed to see if he was a player, he was not. Your problem may be something software related or due to a faulty sender or the interpretation of shared information on the power train information BUS. It might be more meaningful if I could start down the diagnostic tree and not skip over some simple issue or ignore known baseline data. This process will require a short test from the factory scanning device called GT-1 or any of it's clones and to have live data during an actual test drive. There may be corrupted data causing your problem. Start with the basic stuff, look at the power and grounds, inspect for crash damage, obtain history, see if you can pinpoint when this started happening, let me know.
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Saturday, December 19th, 2009 AT 10:31 AM
Tiny
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Hi Dr. Hagerty!. Just a quick update: the car today went to BMW facility in Germany with a plan to check the installed SW versions and possibly upload some "in-house" fixes, which they claim should solve my issues (according to my repair man, they are 95% sure it will help). I'll post the results as soon as it will make sense. Thanks, bye for now.
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Thursday, January 7th, 2010 AT 4:09 AM

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