really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
87,548 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 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2008 BMW 335 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

Sep 112013


  • 95,000 miles


The car would not start as indicated on the recall. The battery was drained from the bad cables. I replaced the cables at BMW under the recall a D was charged for reprogramming. To replace the connectors it would need reprogrammed and I feel the battery should be included in their recall. There are several similar complaints on this issue. The lights worked and all other functions just would not start. BMW advised it needed a new battery but would not include on the recall even though its a known problem. If they had to replace the cable they would have to reprogram it either way, new battery or the existing battery as they would not leave it "hot" while working on it.

- Centerville, IA, USA

problem #13

Sep 112013

335 6-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
9/11/2013 at approximately 9:25 am est my 2008 BMW 335I spontaneously caught fire from what seems to be an electrical problem in the dash board area. I was making my daily commute to work when the ac unit shut off and then turned back on with thick black smoke pouring into the cabin of the car. Naturally I rolled the windows down to allow the smoke to clear so that I could pull over out of traffic. This made matters worse, the smoke thickened, the horn started honking as if someone was holding the horn down, as I was pulling the car over to the side of the road the smoke became unbearable, I was fortunate to escape the car as the fire ripped into the cabin consuming the entire vehicle within just minutes. The car is now totaled and my insurance is investigating. My query is what if I had other people in my car" what if my car was in my garage? what if I had younger children in the car? judging on how quickly the car was engulfed in flames I know for a fact that even in my very able condition removing two young children from the back seat of the car would have been impossible, this needs to be looked into! seeing as BMW's targeted audience is middle to upper class families I wonder if the public knows of the risks" I know I sure didn't, however after reviewing the blogs and posts online I have seen countless other scenarios unfold almost identical to mine and I know I am not alone. I am currently dealing with my insurance and I am sure they will be in touch with BMW as the car was still under 100,000 miles and just at 5 years of age.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #12

Dec 272012

335 6-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
My name is ? and I'm having a serious problem getting my car fixed by the BMW dealership specifically the one located at Edison, NJ. I've also experienced the brakes not working (2) when the car has been driven in bad weather, I.e. snow and rain. Back in April (4/11/2013) BMW corporation a letter stating that if the above problem and other problems mentioned in there letter was evident, I needed to stop driving immediately and have the car serviced, which I did. Well the problem subsided for about a month then started up again (the problem is my car's dash board while driving will go completely or as you'll see in the attachment partially blank on me while I'm driving. When it goes completely blank the car shutters as if it wants to turn off). I wasn't able to make it back to the dealership until around 6/10/2013 to complain that the issue was still happening. On or around the 6/10/2013 date this same tech ran a diagnostic on my car (which I have the copy of). To make a very long story short I returned to the Edison location today 7/17/2013 and text the same attachment to [xxx] members of the BMW management/service team, to my amazement I was told they couldn't find a problem, even though management agreed that via the picture their was a problem. At this point what will it take to find the problem listed in the above attachment? death!!!!!!!...... there is a brake and electrical problem with my car. Just in case anyone wants to make the assumption that in some way I'm trying to get over, please review my payment history, I pay for my car in advance. This is ridiculous!!!! I'm fearful to drive in bad weather, and I'm fearful that in the mist of getting driving direction from my car's gps it's going to black out on me, leaving me in the middle of now-where. Thank god the times it has blanked out, I've been able to figure out where to go. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Perth Amboy, NJ, USA

problem #11

Jul 122013


  • 53,225 miles


Driver's side door would not open because it remained locked. It could not be unlocked using the inside or outside door handle, the key fob unlock button, or the door lock switch on the front dash. I had to physically insert and turn the key from the outside to unlock the car. I understand this may be a fuse or a door lock actuator problem. It is an enormous safety issue if I cannot get out of my car because of an electrical failure.

- Yardley, PA, USA

problem #10

Oct 232012


  • 47,520 miles
The doors will not unlock. The lights flash on the outside but even when pushing the unlock button from the inside of the car the doors stay locked. I'm being told it is a fuse, but literally none of the doors will lock or unlock. The only way I was able to exit my car was by crawling out of my window.

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #9

Aug 202012


  • 16,000 miles
Door locks wouldn't open or close. Inside unlock capabilities not working either. Only access in or out is through the keyed entry. Cannot even open the other three doors.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #8

Jul 202012

335 6-cyl

  • 59,500 miles


Driver exited car to pump gas. Passengers remained in vehicle. Gas door could not be opened as main door lock was engaged (though drivers door was unlocked). Key fob unlock function would not work to unlock car / gas cap. Driver pushed key fob buttons to attempt unlock, drivers door became locked during this activity. Now no doors could be unlocked. Due to failure all doors experienced "2 pull" door unlock system failure, this "2 pull" system, that is supposed to ensure doors can be opened from inside if lock is engaged apparently require same power as general locking system. Driver could only enter car by using emergency key and unlocking driver's door. Passenger and rear doors remained lock (and are still locked / inoperable due to system failure). Power failure in door lock system (or other associated fault) made door operation impossible. All doors were completely inoperable from the inside. Passengers could not exit vehicle as doors were locked and handles did not work. Driver could not enter vehicle by key fob unlock function. Drivers door experienced intermittent operation until some kind of manual override, or some other system change, made drivers door functional by "2 pull" door unlock / open method. If driver had not been present (ie: In store paying for gas or for some other reason) passengers would have been trapped in car. If any passenger had been physically disabled and unable to crawl out of car via drivers door there would have been no way for passenger to exit car !!!!!. door lock system remains inoperable, passenger and rear doors still locked closed with no way to open them.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #7

Mar 132012

335 6-cyl

  • 85,216 miles
The door lock actuators failed on my car, this caused the remote fob and also inner central locking button to stop working, the only way to get out of the car was to roll down the drivers window and take the key fob apart to reveal the metal key inside, this could then be used from the outside to open the door by putting your arm out the window however all other doors remain locked from inside or outside, the other doors do not have a keyhole and the inner door handles were disconnected and would not work. My passengers then had to crawl over the front seats to escape the car thru the drivers door and in an accident or fire they would have been stuck. I think this is extremely dangerous and from searching online I see it is a common problem on this model.

- Plano, TX, USA

problem #6

Oct 232010


  • 44,717 miles
My 2008 BMW 328I, still under factory warranty, required a new battery. I was denied warranty/maintenance coverage for the battery due to my 'driving profile' - I drove more than 100 trips of less than 5km in the last 36 days. However, I drove a total of 2420 miles in the last 32 days, as indicated on two car repair receipts. Bmwna stated that due to me driving such short distances, the battery was unable to charge properly. This sounds like an engineering defect, not a driver-related issue.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #5

Aug 012010


  • 24,500 miles
Side mirrors move up and down even when not set to adjust when going into reverse. Mirrors are adjusted prior to driving, yet at times move the highest or lowest position resulting in mirrors pointed to sky, or road pavement. This has occurred repeatedly. In addition to the problem with the mirrors, passenger and/or driver side power windows roll down after being rolled up. Several trips to dealership made in which computer was "reset" with no resolution to problem. Mirror issue nearly caused accident when trying to avoid an obstacle while driving on highway.

- Exeter, CA, USA

problem #4

Jul 242010


  • 20,000 miles


Engine malfunction. Loss of power.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #3

May 112010

(reported on)


  • miles
2008 BMW 328I. Consumer states when power is lost to the doors, for any reason, the passenger doors remain locked with no way to open them from the inside or the outside of the vehicle the driver's side door opened from the inside when the handle was pulled.

- Ocala, FL, USA

problem #2

Feb 052010


  • 82,000 miles
Three fuel pump failures, BMW factory rep looked at car at BMW cleveland, in solon, Ohio. One week later car caught on fire while sitting in parking lot at work.

- Nova, OH, USA

problem #1

Nov 122008


  • 11,500 miles
Go here for the entire story: www.bmwfire.com 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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