hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
65,498 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 535 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2008 BMW 535 Owner Comments

problem #10

Aug 242016


  • miles


While driving on a rural highway to work the car shutdown completly. I had the car towed to the mechanic for a diagnotic check. The car needed alternator and water pump. I called BMW because there is a recall on the water pump on my vehicle. The customer service rep stated that recalls are vendor specific. That does not make since to me since cars are made on an assembly line.

- Fairburn, GA, USA

problem #9

Mar 122016


  • 105,000 miles
Vehicle was previously driven the day before drove perfect no problems, the day after the vehicle when you put in drive or reverse it would automatically go back to park on it's own and would not move the vehicle was parked in the drive way as normal. I had vehicle towed to BMW they diagnosed as the mechatronic sleeve needed replacing they charged me 1300 dollars my wife picked the car up and drove 50 miles and the car started doing the same previous behavior I contacted BMW they had me to tow back to their dealership a second time both tows cost me 125 dollars each the car was then diagnosed as needing a 9000 transmission and I was told the previous repair that I paid for would not be credited toward the new transmission I'm outraged. My service advisor is john ard at tom williams BMW in irondale Alabama.

- Gadsden, AL, USA

problem #8

Dec 162015


  • 88,500 miles
I purchased a 2008 BMW 5 series wagon 9/1/2015 on California had its first rain storm causing catastrophic failure of the entire electrical system of the BMW resulting in a complete loss 12/16/115. The drain lines are a well documented and a BMW service bulletin was issued to dealerships. While driving on the highway, I experienced widespread system failure, tire warnings, transmission failure warnings and the suspension failed and the car dropped about 6 inches. The BMW dealership gave us $24,188.17 repair estimate for all the electrical components and wiring which is more than the value of the car

- Lafayette, CA, USA

problem #7

Aug 042014

535 6-cyl

  • 56,431 miles


Cold start in the morning for drive to work, car suffered slow start and rough idle. Then check engine light illuminated and reduced power notification on idrive with high coolant fan RPM. Shut down car for 30 minutes, restarted with no issue indicated in idrive but yellow check engine light illuminated on dash. Drove to dealer for scheduled appointment on safety recall for tail lamp assembly (13V-407). While at 40 mph and approximately 1/4 mile from dealer, engine surged then reduced power notification and check engine on idrive. Radiator fan went to high RPM and car slowed to approximately 20 mph rapidly almost causing an accident on a two lane road. Vehicle made it to the dealer without incident. Dealer indicates it is failure of high pressure fuel pump. This is the second replacement of the pump. Last one occurred within 27 months and 16K miles.

- Dupont, WA, USA

problem #6

May 142013

535 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

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problem #5

May 272014


  • 78,000 miles
I was driving my fantastic (expensive) 535xi and all of a sudden when I would implement any pressure on the throttle I experienced a jerking/stuttering sensation.

- Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #4

Jan 052014

535 6-cyl

  • 66,000 miles


On January 5, 2014 driving on the highway approx. 55 mph the vehicle's displayed engine and transmission malfunction dropped my rate of speed to approximately 20 mph (safety mode) almost sustained a rear end collision I then pulled over onto the shoulder I turned the car off waited 10 minutes and turned it on without any issues. I took the car to BMW of tenafly, NJ they inspected the vehicle made some adjustments and said the car was good to drive on the way home traveling approx. 45 mph the car again displayed engine and transmission malfunction dropped my rate of speed to approximately 20 mph (safety mode) I pulled over I turned the car off waited 10 minutes and turned it on the malfunction continued the next day I brought the vehicle back to BMW of tenafly, NJ they changed the control module and some other component in the engine. On June 10, 2014 driving on I95 traveling approximately 65 mph the car onboard display showed a transmission malfunction and dropped my rate of speed to approximately 20 mph (safety mode), I pulled over onto the shoulder I turned the car off waited 10 minutes and turned it on without any issues. Traffic conditions were light, but could potentially be a serious issue (accident or fatality) during normal traffic conditions. On June 9, 2014 I filed a report with BMW usa and I have scheduled an appointment with the service department BMW of tenafly, NJ.

- Bayonne, NJ, USA

problem #3

Mar 192014


  • 67,000 miles
Pressing the shift (transmission) selector into the reverse position, causes the shifters electrical ribbon cable to get pinched and the lights in the shifter and sport button fail to work anymore. Repositioning of this ribbon cable or using a different insulation method would solve this problem.

- Fairview, OR, USA

problem #2

Dec 292013

535 6-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
The car has been replaced a pump sensors 40 days ago because of the engine malfunction, and two weeks ago while started in cold weather, it was shaking and the engine light on. The dealer checked and said that it is the injector problem and recommend to chang all 6 injectors. But the injectors have been changed at the mileage of 27,000 in 2010.

- Daly City, CA, 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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