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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
153,338 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.

2008 BMW 335 lights problems

lights problem

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2008 BMW 335 Owner Comments

problem #9

Sep 012016


  • 81,000 miles


I have a 2008 BMW 335I, and recently I noticed something that is a huge safety issue, and is a major fire hazard as well. Inside of the sealed headlight housing, is a wire harness that's used to power the headlights. That harness has several wires coming out of it, and each one of those wires has a protective colored insulated coating that distinguishes the wires from one another, such as power, ground, etc. Well, every single wire that comes out of that harness is cracked and missing sections of insulation all together, which exposes the copper wires underneath. This is a huge fire safety issue, and upon researching it I noticed dozens of people experiencing this same exact issue. I have gone through two sets of headlights and now it is very apparent as to why this is happening. The wires inside there are touching and keep shorting out my headlights. I've attached a picture showing that I've even had to stick a piece of electrical tape in there as an effort to try and avoid a catastrophic event. Hopefully this is taken a bit more seriously by BMW and they are motivated to do something about it as soon as possible before anything tragic occurs.

- Fort Myers, FL, USA

problem #8

Aug 022015


  • 160,000 miles
Car was parked in the driveway, drove it earlier that day for about an hour, parked it 3pm and 2 hours later neighbor came knocking saying car was smoking. Ran outside and car was on fire. Interior was smoked out. Keyless entry was dead. Broke the window to get the car open, turned the garden hose on to try and stop the car from burning. Called 911 fire dept arrived and had to pry the truck open because it was still sizzling. Fire dept cut the battery cables and said it looked like an electrical fire under the dash. Glove box and passenger side front seat was completely charred. After 22 days, a BMW engineer and allstate ins called it a total loss. BMW engineers report still has not been published. Total loss on a parked vehicle; clearly this vehicle was unsafe and a design fault. Manufacturers are suppose to engineer cars to withstand fires.

- Ontario, CA, USA

problem #7

Oct 012014


  • 800,000 miles
I had noticed a melting plastic smell for a few weeks but couldn't identify the source and shortly after this my headlight burnt out so I went to replace the bulb. By this time, I noticed smoke coming out of my headlight mount. Upon opening the headlight I noticed all of the wire shielding had fallen off of the wires inside the headlight mount, causing the wires to ark and melt. Upon comparing against the other headlight, I found the same thing- all of the wire shielding had fallen off. I went to the dealer and was told that this happens all the time, simply due to how hot and dry this model gets under the hood and the headlights being sealed. They said it's usually covered by the extended warranty, however not in the case of my vehicle's mileage. Since the headlight is a sealed unit, you cannot access the wires to replace them and cannot purchase a harness, the whole unit must be replaced at a cost of $800 each. I googled and found several complaints of the same issue. Upon contacting BMW hq directly, they said it is a known issue, but not covered, and got back to me several weeks later offering to pay $200 toward the cost of the $1600 repair if I had it done at the dealer, or $2000 toward the purchase of a new BMW.

- Simpsonville, SC, USA

problem #6

May 082014


  • 68,543 miles


High beams no longer can be relied upon to stay on. Dash light says they are on, but they aren't. they will stay on for about 30 to 40 seconds then go to low beam only.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #5

Jul 042014

335 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
This is a huge problem on a ton of BMW vehicles that are equipped with BMW's adaptive headlight technology. Not only is it a huge problem on the cars, but is a danger to other vehicles on the road and the safety of the driver and passengers of said BMW. The adaptive headlights will move as the car moves (left/right and up/down). These headlights have a mechanism in them that control the movement and it breaks quite often especially on bumpy roads. BMW dealerships will say "you hit a pot hole and the light mechanism broke. You will need a whole new assembly and it cost $1800". this would be ok if it didn't endanger other people on the road and the actual driver and passengers of said car. The headlights will jam to either the straight up position. This is jammed so far up that it lights the roof in my garage and I can't see anything on the road in front of me. They also jam all the way to the left, all the way to the right, and straight down depending on when the mechanism fails. This means that drivers on either side of the road can be completely blinded and could cause a fatal accident by looking away from the road. This also causes a huge issue for the driver of the car as you can't see the road in front of you. My previous car (infiniti G35 coupe) had a similar issue except Nissan had the projects aimed to high from the factory. This was a huge recall and forced Nissan to reissue functioning headlights. BMW will not budge on the fact that this is a major safety issue. From research online I am 1 of thousands that have this issue and BMW has not recognized it. I am not willing to spend thousands of dollars on a issue that is clearly a engineering qa issue and is also risking my life when driving at night and putting on coming motorist in danger as well. Any help with this issue would be greatly appreciated.

- Austin, TX, USA

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problem #4

Mar 212014


  • 73,000 miles
I was warming up the car in the morning for work, it was on for about ten minutes; as I sat down put the car in reverse I heard a noise and my car shut down. I turned my car back on and drove for a short period before noticing that there was not any air blowing.... I took it the mechanic a day later to replace the blower motor.... the problem was not the blower motor, the problem was a rectangle shaped cable for four prongs but only three where connected to the blower motor melted and burned out the cable. The mechanic followed the cable and cut the affected burned corroded rusted !!! part of the cable, and replaced it..... if I wasn't looking he would have charged me for a blower....and maybe more !!! I honestly do think BMW should fix this problem... two days later my driver side window switch when out- I purchased one at orielys auto parts; the water pump also failed the same day and my car over heated that made the total over 2 grand in less than a week!!!, but my blower works perfect wtf !!! everything began that morning.... because of the cable that shorted !!! oh and on top of that the turbo is making noises and I think its failing now!!!

- Pflugerville, TX, USA

problem #3

Mar 162014

335 6-cyl

  • 54,000 miles


I was on I95 North, headlight wiper system blew-out the headlight washer device during use.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #2

Jan 022014


  • 72,000 miles
Adaptive head light system failure while driving down the interstate. This is the third time the unit had been replaced within 4 years and under 65K miles. Every time this was a non aggravated issue and not covered by the dealer. Furthermore, while driving the car around a corner at a moderate rate of speed I noticed the car making an abnormal noise. Upon pulling over and inspecting further, it was found to be a shredded belt which had thrown itself everywhere inside the engine bay. Once it was towed to be repaired, it was discovered that the power steering pulley contacted the front bar and, breaking the pulley in half, causing it to have sharp edges which directly cut the belt in half and resulted in the belt being wrapped around the pulley and various engine components. There is not enough clearance as a result of a factory/manufacturer defect and now I am out on the bill.

- Valrico, FL, USA

problem #1

Nov 122008


  • 11,500 miles
Go here for the entire story: I purchased a brand new 2008 BMW 328I for $38,000 from sonnen BMW in san rafael, California. The car had a serious manufacturers defect that caused an electrical fire and resulted in my car being totaled. I had multiple issues with the front passengers side fog light falling out of its casing into the lower corner of the bumper which caused three separate fires. BMW has refused to replace my vehicle that had 11,500 miles and is covered under warranty. At the end of June 2008 I first realized this problem happened upon a closer inspection of the exterior of the car. I brought the car right away to sonnen BMW's service department, as I was worried about the safety of the vehicle. I showed them what happened, but they told me that they had no available appointments until two weeks out and that my car was safe to drive. Two weeks later I brought my vehicle to sonnen's service department, they "verified the defect" as stated in their service records. They replaced the complete front bumper and supposedly re secured the foglight. All of this was covered under BMW's warranty as it was a manufactures defect. I asked tom murtha (my service advisor) why this had happened, he told that because there was absolutely no impact damage, the only way this could have occurred was a mistake when building the vehicle at the factory. I thought all of my problems were solved until a foggy day in san francisco, California. On October 25th, 2008 at approximately 4:00 pm. While waiting at a stoplight I turned on my fog lights at the intersection of front & broadway (assuming that the foglight had been secured). It was foggy out and my passenger and I could not see the smoke that was coming from the passenger side fog light because of a small fire it caused. I was made aware of this when a pedestrian walked up to my car and alerted me that there was a fire. I pulled over right away and I dumped the contents of a large water bottle on the flame.

- San Rafael, CA, USA

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