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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
82,470 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2001 BMW 330 lights problems

lights problem

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2001 BMW 330 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Apr 152016


  • 90,000 miles


Dash indicated left taillight was out when it wasn't, this was random on and off for a few months. After a few months the dash panel indicator light stayed on. As I was driving one day I noticed the smell of smoke coming from the trunk. I stopped, and noticed the melted wires from the tail light harness. As I looked at them I could see them sparking when certain movements occurred., very dangerously and erratic. Both male and female sides melted. This is extremely dangerous as it impedes the ability to warn other drivers when turning or stopping. This was brought to the dealerships attention but they do not consider this an important enough issue to replace it as part of a recall or service recovery.

- Pearland, TX, USA

problem #21

Mar 132016


  • 60,000 miles
My headlights are very dim due to a a plastic reflector in the headlight housing manufactured by zkw that burns out prematurely. This causes a very serious road hazard as visibility is greatly diminished. I have nearly struck sever pedestrians, other vehicles and dark objects at night on the highway such as large tire debris.

- Parkland, FL, USA

problem #20

Aug 012015


  • miles
The rear parking light went out in my car, so I purchased more bulbs, but the bulb never worked. I took my car to my BMW dealership for the takata recall, they checked the light too and said that a part in the housing had burned all the way down. I recently checked on recalls, and found that there were problems with the housing that houses the brake and signal lights, beginning with 2002 models. My car is a 325I 2001, I feel that this year should be included in a recent recall, I researched online, and found that there are many 2001 BMW 325is with the same problem as the that recall. This could possibly cause an accident. I really think this should be included immediately.

- Troy, MI, USA

problem #19

Aug 102015


  • 187,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 BMW 330 xi. While driving at approximately 30 mph, the rear light warning on the instrument panel illuminated. After inspecting the vehicle, the contact noticed that the tail lamp connector was melted. The contact stated that connector number three melted on both ends. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 187,000. The VIN was not available.

- Southwick, MA, USA

problem #18

May 152015


  • 94,000 miles
A recall has been issued for this problem for cars produced from 9/1/01 to 02/01/05. [recall campaign 11V-438: Repair ground cable for rear light lamps (side panel)]....updated 09/22/15 I have the exact same problem although my car was produced approximately 14 months prior to the vehicles affected by the recall. Situation one or more of the following lights does not function in the rear lamp assembly, mounted on the rear quarter panel (rear parking light, rear turn signal, and rear brake light). Cause a poor ground connection at the rear lamp assembly (connectors X338 left side " pin # 2 and X339 right side " pin # 3) causes a malfunction of the rear tail lamps.

- Cambridge, MA, USA

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problem #17

Dec 012014

330 6-cyl

  • 133,000 miles
My vehicle in the last week has an tail light indicator illuminated the dash. Upon investigation of the part it looks to have the same issues as many have described with the ground wire being scorched. I contacted BMW na because of the similar recall on other BMW vehicles. Unfortunately they were unwilling to help unless I was willing to take the car into a dealership for an 90 dollar diagnosis. Only after that would they be willing to weigh in if they would be willing to cover the cost of the repair or not. This is not a gamble that I'm really willing to take. Recall NHTSA action number: PE09036 should be extend to the 2001 330ci bmws. Please open a investigation into this as it is a widely known issue with these cars.

- Wilson, NC, USA

problem #16

Apr 042014

330 6-cyl

  • 92,000 miles


My BMW is having the same issues that the 2002 BMW 3 series has a recall on. The rear taillights are burning the neutral wire and connector off in the lamp assemblies. Causing the lights to become in operable.

- Munster, IN, USA

problem #15

Nov 112013

330 6-cyl

  • 162,000 miles
The brake lights in the tail light assembly have partially failed. One set of brake light bulbs, the dual filament bulbs no longer light when the brake pedal is pressed. The bulbs have been replaced and are in working order so it appears to be an issue with the wiring or the tail light assembly.

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #14

May 142013

330 6-cyl

  • miles
Electrical ground contact resistance in rear tail lamp has rendered tail lamp non functional and caused warning lamp illumination. Problem appears to be identical to campaign 11V438000.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #13

Mar 122013


  • 135,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 BMW 330ci. The contact stated that the headlights and tail-lights began flickering abnormally. The failure was recurring and often, the lights would appear to have weak illumination. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer for a diagnostic test. The dealer stated that the ground wire for the taillight harness had a short and caused the headlights to blink constantly. The vehicle was repaired however, the headlights continued to repeatedly flicker on and off. The contact did not take the vehicle back to the dealer for further inspection or repairs. The failure mileage was 135,000.

- Boulder, CO, USA

problem #12

Oct 152012

330 6-cyl

  • 103,000 miles


I was receiving a intermittent left tail light warning indicator and assumed it was a bulb that was going out. After some time had past I received a steady left tail light indicator and when I was about to replace the bulb I discovered the bulbs was fine and found the wiring/connector in the tail light bulb carrier had a short/melted. I believe this is the same issue/problem on the 2002-2005 BMW E46 3series which a tail light recall was issued.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #11

Jan 152013


  • miles
Drivers side tail light assembly is defective. No brake light, tail light or turn signal. Ground wire in connector melted.

- Cedar Rapids, IA, USA

problem #10

Jul 022012

330 6-cyl

  • 132,000 miles
Recently my rear taillights were noticeably darker and less responsive. Taking my BMW to my authorized BMW dealership/service center, resulted in a diagnosis that the rear wire harness needed to be replaced at a cost of ~$300. Following the visit to the dealership/service center, resulted in the rear light failing completely. Researching this incident online produced many similar problems w/other 330I models and I also discovered that NHTSA had issued a recall of BMW 3-series from my 02-06. My BMW is a 01. It is apparent, from the many postings on BMW boards and websites, that this defect also occurs in older bmws of the same E46 series earlier than model yr 2002. I ask that NHTSA extend the previous recall to earlier model years of the E46 series of bmws.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #9

Apr 182012

330 6-cyl

  • 117,500 miles
My 2001 BMW 330I is experiencing tail light problems. The right rear turn signal light does not work and when activating it, it blinks twice as fast on the front and side marker. On the display panel it shows the rear right signal is out. The left rear brake light is also out. This problem has been going on for a few months now at least. The car display on the dash indicates that the rear right brake light is out. I have changed everybulb in the rear of the car which fixed nothing. I then disconnected the the tailight connector on each side to reveal that some of the pins inside of the connection have melted away. I am positive that is the problem as it is with the 2002-2005 model 3 series. I called BMW about the recall and of course 2001 is not included yet! I hope this gets fixed soon. It is extremely inconvenient and dangerous.

- Duvall, WA, USA

problem #8

Apr 132012

330 6-cyl

  • miles
There is a current recall for 2002-2005 BMW (various models) regarding the rear lights. We are experiencing the same problems in our 2001 330I. The right rear tail lights do not work and the turn signal blinks and the turn signal sound is twice as fast as normal. I am writing to make your department aware that the model years should be expanded to include the 2001 BMW 330I.

- Heath, TX, USA

problem #7

Jan 092012

330 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
The left rear brake light started to dim and triggered a warning indicator but went away. After a month or two, all the lights on rear left has failed. No brake lights, turn signal, or reverse light on the left side. After researching this looks likes NHTSA action number : EA09019. I currently see the burn harness and lightbulb carrier burnt as well. After the lights going out it has caused the headlights to flicker. The recall isn't just sedans, 2001 coupes should be added to the list. Currently I have no rear tail lights and strobbing headlights.

- Newark, CA, USA

problem #6

Oct 202011


  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 BMW 330cic. The contact was driving 40 mph when the tail lights failed to illuminate properly. The contacted stated that the tail light warning lamp illuminated prior to the failure. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic where the mechanic confirmed the failure with the tail light assembly. The manufacturer was not contacted and the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 92,000 and the current mileage was 96,000.

- Stayton, OR, USA

problem #5

Feb 062012

330 6-cyl

  • 117,233 miles
Left tail lights stopped working. Inspection found burnt ground wire at wiring connector. Replacement of ground wire, connector and bulb holder assembly needed.

- Bellingham, WA, USA

problem #4

Dec 012011


  • miles
For BMW E46 2001, rear turn signal light brown grounding wire arches and damages the socket causing the light to flicker on occasion. This problem is also evident in later models of BMW E46 and an recall has been issued on E46 2002-2006 models. It's problematic that they also didn't address this on E46 2001 models because it seems to occur in the earlier model as well as evident with my car.

- Boston, MA, USA

problem #3

Apr 012009


  • 104,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 BMW 330ci. The contact was driving 40-50 mph when the tail lamp warning light illuminated and the driver side tail light failed to illuminate. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic where the mechanic confirmed that the tail light assembly failed. The manufacturer was not contacted. The vehicle was not repaired the failure mileage was 104,000 and the current mileage was 119,500.

- Woodbridge, NJ, USA

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