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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,683 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 550 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2008 BMW 550 Owner Comments

problem #3

May 142013

550 8-cyl

  • 85,000 miles


On or about May 2013 I was traveling at 60mph on the freeway when suddenly I heard a loud bang sound and my vehicle came to an automatic stop. Scared as vehicle behind me screeched and turn away avoiding me. I remained in the middle of the road for approximately 30 minutes before the vehicle restarted and I traveled fearfully to complete my assignment. Same day on my return home vehicle stopped about 3 times but I drove straight to dealership. Without inspecting my vehicle I was told my alternator and battery was gone. I was quoted very high amount but something told me a bad alternator and battery would not start a vehicle so I offered to take my vehicle home. My vehicle stayed home for about 4 months without use only warm ups reverse and park. I did extensive research to avoid the frivolous amount the dealers quoted and found that the integrated module (ivm) was bad. I got it for $144 and replaced it and problem was fixed after 4 months. Until April 2014 I drove the out to work and barely two miles away from home I stopped at a traffic light and when released the vehicle sounded a huge banged sound this with transmission malfunction light active brake lights and several other lights on dash board. Once again I survived being ran over in the early morning rush. Took vehicle to BMW dealership. Told gear shifter was bad and replaced for $915 and thereafter I received a call the transmission was out. I was advised cost will be $15000 then later that it cannot be fixed and advice to sale it as is to some guy. I owe $17900 on vehicle. Called BMW North America to complain was told new transmission cost $9200 and I'm asked to pay $7400 best deal. There's no reason for transmission on 2008 to go out. Since dealers took my car they gave me a rental for 4 days and took it from me but kept my vehicle for additional 2 weeks and are still holding it calling to accept deal.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #2

Jan 032011

550 8-cyl

  • 36,000 miles
Vehicle shuts off unexpectedly and fails to restart, additionally the vehicle will randomly fail to start. The engine will shut off while driving at highway speeds, when driving slowly, or shortly after shifting the car into drive from park. No warnings or errors are generally encountered or logged however in rare instances drivetrain warnings are displayed. The engine displays no strange behavior prior to this occurring and shuts off as if it were instructed to do so. The vehicle regularly fails to start. The engine does not turn over at all or make any indication that it is attempting to start. The vehicle responds as though the ignition was not activated and was never instructed to start. After a random time interval from 5 minutes to 2 hours the car will start as if no problems were ever encountered. No errors are logged in the ECU. The manufacturer has yet to find any issues which they claim are repairable after approximately 40 days of shop time and well over 100 occurrences.

- Ocala, FL, USA

problem #1

Jul 142010


  • 37,048 miles
BMW 535xi sport wagon 2008-.. driving on highway, icon came on above speedometer - orange engine/half black and on dashboard below navi readout "engine malfunction-reduced power." From then on we had no thrust with gas pedal. Car went in for service and was supposedly repaired. This then happened four more times. Each time the car was in the shop and parts were thrown at it and each time we were told the issue was probably fixed but they really did not know what the problem was. The car was in the shop about 30 days since the original incident. Parts replaced were vacuum hose black, vacuum pump, pressure sensor, removed and reinstalled throttle, replaced all vaccuum hoses on 7/14/10, charged battery 7/27.

- Southampton, NY, USA

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