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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 08-03-2004, 06:05 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I just bought a '94 318 IS Automatic with 118,000 miles ;ast week. I have driven it 150 miles so far. The car is driving great with one exception...When I take it out first thing in the morning after sitting overnight, it takes a bout 3-4 minutes for the gear shifting to "kick in." Basically when I first give it gas out of my driveway, it revs higher with minimal power. After a few minutes, the car drives great and the problem disappears until the next morning where it repeats itself for the same 3-4 minutes. I only have a 15 day warranty on transmission and engine. The used car dealer (he only deals in used BMW's and has a good reputation) who sold it to me said this is completely normal for the car to need a bit of a warm-up. I asked if I should do a transmission flush/filter change, and he said I would be wasting my money, and that his mechanic checked the car head to toe and everything is fine. Is this really normal as he said, or should I be worried. What are the signs of a failing automatic transmission?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-03-2004, 06:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How cold is it in the morning?
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Old 08-03-2004, 06:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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not cold--I live in Los Angeles.
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Old 08-03-2004, 06:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Old 08-03-2004, 07:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Well then. It doesn't sound normal. Could just be a low amount of fluid. I don't know though, maybe a slipping torque converter clutch but why does it get better.... hmm very odd.

Maybe somebody else can shine some more light in the situation.
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Old 08-04-2004, 02:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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yeah its better to catch something when it wont cost as much as compared to letting it sit and ahving to buy a new tranny!

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Old 08-05-2004, 12:40 AM   #7 (permalink)
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...so I took it to a transmission shop and they checked everything over, and road tested and say that it is not the tranny--phew. I am going to replace the tranny fluid and go from there. This shop thinks it may be an engine or exhaust problem (saying that I am not getting the power I should), but that is not their specialty, so I will see how the new fluid takes and go from there. The car is running great other tha the 3-4 minute warm-up in the morning, and I also received an Email from someone on this board saying that my problem is somewhat common in my model and year. If anyone comes acroos any new info, let me know. As for now, thanks for all the help.
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