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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 04-08-2006, 01:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Stupid n00b question

This is really embarassing and I dont know how else to put it, so i'll get straight to the point. How do you put a manual BMW in reverse, like how do I access the reverse gear?

My grandfather owns a 1997 BMW 318is which he loved and drove when he had somewhere important to go. Unfortunately he suffered a stroke that completely changed him, he will never be able to drive again. Well seeing how I am the oldest of the grandkids, he gave me the car. This is my first BMW and the first standard I'll be driving since I graduated high school. I learned to drive stick on a Saab 9000 which had a lockout switch so your dumb ass wouldnt accidentally put the car in reverse. The switch on the Saab was actually visible, you just had to lift the bottom part of the shift knob. I can only assume that the BMW has the same sort of lockout switch, unfortunately I dont know where or what it is. There is no visible button or switch or anything on the shift knob. I know where reverse is located, its before 1 gear, but like I said I dont know how to get to it.

Its a beautiful, low milage car and I'd really love to drive the hell out of it. I dont have the manual so I am left to ask around on the net. I'd really appreciate any help anyone here can offer. Thanks for your time and again I appologize for the stupid question.
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
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all the way over to the left, then up, right next to first gear. Happy motoring!
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:26 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah, left, then even farther left, then like 1st.
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thats what I thought but it wont let me go farther left than 1st. Unless I am doing it wrong.
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:42 AM   #5 (permalink)
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just a fyi its in the same spot on mercedes but you have to pull the shifter up and then put it in reverse
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Old 04-08-2006, 09:26 AM   #6 (permalink)
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You just have to push hard enough. I don't know where Ivan comes up with the idea of pulling the shifter up (maybe it works in his car). There is a small detain that prevents you from going into reverse by mistake. Like I said, just push hard; you'll feel the shifter go over to the other side of the detain.
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The pulling of the handle up is on a Mercedes, Ivan was just trying to say it's in the same spot on a BMW, minus the lifting of the handle.
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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it is left, but you have to push is very hard to the left. BMW has a stop there, so you don't accidentally put it in reverse, thinking it is 1st.

just get in the car, and push very hard to the left, when you feel it go past the stop, push up, like in 1st gear.

good luck !!
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Old 04-11-2006, 09:46 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I found it! Hah, I found reverse and oh my God does it feel good! I was finally able to drive the from his house to mine and I loved every minute of it! Thanks for all the help!
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Old 04-12-2006, 07:27 PM   #10 (permalink)
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its tricky to explain but good on u lol congrats
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