Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,582 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.

2006 BMW X3 engine problems

engine problem

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2006 BMW X3 Owner Comments

problem #4

Jan 162013

X3 6-cyl

  • 94,095 miles


Jan 16 - check engine sensor light came on - car running sluggish. Immediately took to dealership - they detected oil separator failing. Car started smoking at dealership. They replaced the oil separator and several parts due to damage - costs $2400. March 22nd - same sensor light came on - took car back to dealership - they have had the car for 1 week and still have not told me what is wrong with it other than there is oil everywhere and I may have head gasket or engine damage. Possibly looking at another $1K to $5K. There is a manufacturer defect with this part causing serious damage to the engine. This is widely known and well documented all over the internet. This should be addressed by BMW and consumers should be given relief on the costs. BMW should support the correction of this defect and pay for the cost of repair. Dealer (chattanooga BMW) should have also informed me about the broader issue versus me finding out on my own research.

- Ringgold, GA, USA

problem #3

Dec 032011

X3 6-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
The intake boot between the mass air sensor and the throttle body cracks over time. This causes the check engine light to come on. Even though this is a known failure item, and the car is within the cpo warranty period, BMW does not cover any hoses or tubes, as they believe they are "wear" items. Since it is not covered its a $175 dollar diagnostic fee and $38.54 for the part vs $50 deductible. You do not know if your repair is covered until the diagnostic, so short of having to take it to another mechanic to have it checked you could be penalized $125 for wanting you car repaired under the extended warranty which you paid extra for.

- Lomita, CA, USA

problem #2

Jan 162011


  • 40,881 miles
I started my 06 BMW X3 in my driveway to warm it up prior to driving. It appeared to be fine, I backed out of my driveway and noticed it was smoking from the exhaust. I drove about 100ft to the end of my street and the smoking worsened so I decided to return home. I turned onto the main street and drove at most 20mph for a few blocks to get back home. The smoke was pouring out of the exhaust so badly that I couldn't see out my back window. It was blue/grey colored. The car was putting and chugging. I did not make it home. Eventually the car chugged a few times and completely shut down. The warning lights all lit up and I lost all power, including power steering. It was stranded across a driveway and would not start. I have followed all recommended maintenance, drive locally and use premium gas. There was no reasonable explanation to this failure. I had it towed to a local BMW repair shop and found that it was the "oil separator" that failed. My invoice states that it was an "engine hydraulic lock". the failure of the "oil separator", which is called a cyclone separator on my invoice, caused the car to flood with oil. The cyclone separator and crankcase vent hoses were replaced. Researching online I found that this is a common issue with BMW, mostly the X5 models. BMW N.a. refused to assist me, my warranty expired 3 months prior due to the year of the car, but had not met the mileage requirement. The repair cost $1100 and I was without a vehicle for 3 days. I also had to pay $70 for a tow as BMW would not honor the road assistance.

- Portland, ME, USA

problem #1

Apr 042008


  • 16,352 miles
The contact owns a 2006 BMW X3. While driving between 60-65 mph, the contact began decelerating for traffic and the vehicle began shaking and then shut off. Approximately two minutes later, the vehicle would restart. The failure has occurred four times and has been to the dealer three times for the stalling. The dealer could not duplicate the failure. Most recently, the engine light began illuminating intermittently. The current mileage was 18,000 and failure mileage was 16,352.

- Greenwich, CT, USA

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