1997 BMW Z3

Tiny
VBRUNETTE
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  • 1997 BMW Z3
1997 BMW Z3 4 cyl Automatic 43,000 miles

I have a 1997 BMW Z3 with 43,000 miles. I went on a short errand and had travelled about 2 miles from home when the car stalled at a light. It was a hot day.90 degrees and the air conditioning was on. I turned the a/c off and attempted to re-start the car a few times. It turned over but sputtered out. I had to have it towed to the local BMW dealership. After four days in the shop, the dealership said that the car had a clean computer code, started just fine and they could not re-create the problem. It would seem to me that this is not normal and now I have no confidence that it won't quit on me the next time I take it out. Has anyone else encountered this problem with the Z3?
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Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 AT 10:47 PM

7 Replies

Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
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About how much fuel was in the tank when the stalling occurred?
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Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 AT 10:56 PM
Tiny
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The tank was about 3/4 full and I use 89 octane.
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Wednesday, July 14th, 2010 AT 10:31 AM
Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
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The dealers' inability to recreate the issue does not surprise me. Typically this type of intermittent issue is caused by either a fuel delivery issue or an electrical pathway that had been temporarily compromised. What this could mean is the fuel pump could have been vapor locked or the relay that controls the pump had been unable to make the connection to the pump from the power supply. There is also a possibility the power train control electronics have some sort of intermittent (there's that word again!) Issue that does not or did not show up on the dealers scan of the car. This leaves me with little else to say as I am not the tech repairing the car and it is not sitting on my lift at work so that I can see it for myself. Have the dealer get someone to drive the car until it has the same issue.
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Thursday, July 15th, 2010 AT 8:34 AM
Tiny
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Thanks so much for the possible explanation for what happened. At least that makes sense to me. The suggestion that absolutely nothing was wrong or had occurred to cause the stall did not make sense to me. The dealer told me they did multiple test drives and after doing so, felt they had done enough. They told me to pick up the car. I drove it home last night (about a 15 mile ride) without a problem. I will save your post and if this does happen again will suggest they check the items you mentioned.
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Thursday, July 15th, 2010 AT 8:48 AM
Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
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Please keep in mind that intermittent issues are the most difficult ones to recreate and repair. The dealer has a somewhat limited attention span when it comes to "intermittent" if you get my meaning.
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Thursday, July 15th, 2010 AT 9:08 AM
Tiny
VBRUNETTE
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Yes, it became apparent to me that my "intermittent" problem was not on the top of the priority list. One last question. If the problem is any of the things you mentioned in your earlier post, is the car only likely to stall when I am stopped or might that happen while it's actually driving. My fear is that this will happen when I'm on the highway going at a decent clip.
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Thursday, July 15th, 2010 AT 10:05 PM
Tiny
DR. HAGERTY
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Your fear is reasonable, I get it. The possibility of it happening on the freeway is difficult to calculate and I would feel better about recommending something if more data were available, right now I would say drive the car and see what happens.
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Friday, July 16th, 2010 AT 8:43 AM

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