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Torque Converter/Transmission Replacement - BMW post-warranty help?

Discussion in 'E39 (1997-2003)' started by jtoppe, Dec 30, 2008.

    jtoppe guest

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    My 2003 530i with 71,000 miles displayed the "service engine soon" warning the day before Christmas and my dealer read fault code 048 indicating "converter lock-up excessive slip." My service advisor recommends replacing the entire transmission for $5,000 rather than just the torque converter for $3,000. He also said that BMW may consider covering at least part of the repair cost. Replacing the entire transmission sounds like the best option -- but is it really necessary? Should I consider this an urgent repair (i.e. next few days) or can I safely drive the car at least a week or so into the new year? Does anyone have experience with BMW covering part of the cost? If so, what is reasonable -- especially when many other makes provide 100,000 mile power train warranties and BMW does not provide for transmission fluid replacement? This is my third five-series, all purchased new, and my wife has a 325ci, so we are certainly loyal to BMW and want to be optimistic that they will stand behind the car, even out of warranty. Thanks in advance for any suggestions or advice.

    M3Driver guest

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    Talk To the Service Manager

    Talk to the Service Manager (not the service advisor) and request a goodwill warranty repair and tell them that you have been maintaining the transmission to BMW standards and guidelines (which is no fluid change at all). They have the flexibility to grant this but only if you ask.

    Cheers.

    jtoppe guest

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    Thanks, I will do that. It sounds as if I should be asking BMW to cover the entire cost.

    M3Driver guest

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    Yes; that is exactly what I would try to do. Again, emphasize that you have maintained the transmission per BMW guidelines and you are quite disappointed that you would have a failure at such low miles (etc, etc...). I have been told that the term "disappointed in BMW" has a certain ring at BMW NA these days, so you may continually throw that in as necessary. :D

    Also speak to the service manager in his office; not out in the main area (that has worked wonders for me in past).

    Let us know how it all works out.

    Cheers..

    jtoppe guest

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    Report will follow.

    Thanks again. I will let you know the outcome. Have a happy, safe and fast New Year! John
    • Member
    • Technical Service Advisor

    mooseheadm5

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    Remember to start nice (maybe bring muffins) and work your way to getting tough. Don't take no for an answer, but don't get carried out by the cops either.

    jtoppe guest

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    Thanks, Paul. I have a call in to the Service Manager now. Here's a question--how urgent is this repair? Can I keep driving for a week or two as we negotiate and then schedule the work? I don't want to be stranded on one of our bridges, or do anything that would give BMW cause to blame me for damage. John

    jtoppe guest

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    Problem resolved--thanks for the advice

    Thanks to members gepainter and Paul (mooseheadm5) for the advice.

    I did not need the muffins, but John Elmendorf (Service Director) and Dennis Daley, SA, at Ferman BMW in Palm Harbor, FL went to bat for me with BMW. I provided a letter that stated my history as a multiple BMW owner and 4-time Ferman buyer and they responded. Note that a service advisor at a different dealership was the one who said BMW might split the total cost with me if I was lucky. I appreciate this service provided by the BMWCCA and appreciate the advice that saved me thousands of dollars!

    John

    M3Driver guest

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    Just am getting caught up on this. Very glad it all worked out for you!

    cheers..

    jtoppe guest

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    Thanks again to the Club and Members

    Once again, thanks. It is a great service when members contribute their personal time to help each other, especially those of you who have technical or personal experience to share.:)

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