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///M3 Forum
The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

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Old 02-24-2008, 06:07 PM   #1
nradbmw
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Known SMG problems

I recently just bought my 05 M3 w/ the SMG (it has 15K miles on it and I traded in my Imola Red 330i ZHP). I've noticed a few, how should I say, 'irregularities' with the car and its shifting. I'm not too concerned with what I'm seeing, and right now I'll chalk them up to I'm not used to this tranny.

I was wondering if someone has a comprehensive list of what starts going wrong with the SMG and what those symptoms might start looking like.

Good thing is it is still under warranty for 18 more months, so if it is something major, it is probably covered.

Something unrelated, (maybe) it was idling rough for a few moments when I started it this afternoon. Seemed to clear up when I took it around the block.

Thanks in advance to any replies.
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Old 02-24-2008, 06:49 PM   #2
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The SMG transmission system does not and will not drive like an automatic. You are most likely just not used to the way it works, unless you have time in someone elses SMG and are making a direct comparison. Be more specific with what you are feeling that makes you think there is a problem, RPMs , shift level selected etc.
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Old 02-24-2008, 06:53 PM   #3
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SMG problems can usually be traced back to either a faulty relay, hood sensor, or the pump.
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Old 02-24-2008, 06:57 PM   #4
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Mine idles sorta rough at startup sometimes too.. doesn't seem to be a big deal.
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Old 02-24-2008, 08:16 PM   #5
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first, I don't expect it to drive like an auto. I've never had an auto Bimmer, so I'm not sure what that is suppose to feel like anyway.

Well the first problem I noticed, (and this has only happened once) was that it was having trouble getting into 1st from Neutral. I started the car (in Neutral naturally) and bumped the gear changer to the right, and it didn't change to 1st. I bumped it a couple times and nothing. I then put it in R then back to 1st and then it changed to 1st. Weird....Granted, that has only happened once now.

Really what I wanted to hear was for those owners whom have taken their M3s into the shop for SMG related issues, what were the issues and what were the symptoms of that issue.

I'm not here to bash SMG, there are plenty of threads for that. I really enjoy it and want to understand its nuances and potential problems.
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Old 02-24-2008, 08:42 PM   #6
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I'll be interested as well in the responses as I just bought a M3 with the SMG trans.
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Old 02-24-2008, 09:36 PM   #7
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I just purchased an '02 M3 SMG with 59k on it. This is my first non-manual car. I took it in to the dealer under the CPO because of what I would describe as a "clunking" noise when shifting into 2nd and 3rd. One tech thought it could potentially be an issue with the rear diff. Upon further inspection there were no issues. I was told the noise is completely normal. I drove two other M's with SMG and they performed the same.
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Old 02-24-2008, 09:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by freshman View Post
Mine idles sorta rough at startup sometimes too.. doesn't seem to be a big deal.
Mine idles rough on start up after sitting for a bit. BMW mechs told me this was typical of M3's. They performed a recall on the computer and said it will help a bit.
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Old 02-24-2008, 09:44 PM   #9
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I have SMG on my 04 330. I haven't had any probs, but I'm curious as to what other ppl have experienced.
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Old 02-24-2008, 10:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nradbmw View Post
Well the first problem I noticed, (and this has only happened once) was that it was having trouble getting into 1st from Neutral. I started the car (in Neutral naturally)
I haven't driven my M for a while but I'm pretty sure you have to have it in neutral to start the car. Also the e-brake has to be on and your foot on the brake also. Another thing is if the hood is popped the car won't start and you could be in your car for an hour trying to figure out what's going on. Haha.

It's a tricky set up and I still don't know every aspect of the SMG.

The idle issue is most likely because you have the fan running on a higher level when you first start. I had the same problem and someone on here told me what it was. So just start with the fan off and the idle problem goes away. (at least for me)
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Old 02-24-2008, 11:09 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by xXMaGNUSXx View Post
I have SMG on my 04 330. I haven't had any probs, but I'm curious as to what other ppl have experienced.
hahaha.. right
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:08 AM   #12
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my .02 cents (sorry long)

Well I want to start by saying that bar none, my SMG E46 was by far the favorite car I have owned to date. It was the third M I have owned, the first was an E36, the second a 03 six speed manual convert, and the last an 02 SMG hardtop.
I bought the car second hand through the dealer, with 14k miles on it. The car was immaculate, unmolested minus some radio mods, DVD player and TV tuner, and 19" BBS to fit the big brake kit.
The car did not have the 100k warranty and the dealer would not sell it too me because I was not the original owner. The car worked flawlessly, the SMG seemed perfect with the same clunks and noises they say are normal. In a two-year period, I put approx. 20K miles on it. One day, like any other I drove the car my usual commute and parked it in front of my house. Five minutes later I returned to my car to leave again. I put the key in the ignition and turned it to the start position. All the lights came on normal, the radio came to life but the car did not start, no clicks, no noises just would not start like a neutral safety switch had been clicked. I tried everything with no luck. I had to run so I jumped in my Tacoma and rolled. The next morning I call the tow truck to meet me and headed out to my car. I thought I would try again and to my surprise the car started right up. Drove the car and all was normal. Car acted perfect for a day and I drove it to the dealer who scanned it and said all was ok, thought maybe the hood switch had malfunctioned but was better now.
3 days later, and whamo, same ****, no start again! Called the truck and sent the car to BMW. When it arrived there they called me and said although my car was far under the warranty on mileage because it was a month over on time they would not cover the work and needed my ok to proceed, just my luck, but I need my car so fix it.
3 days later, BMW calls and informs me that the hydraulic pump had failed and it needed to be replaced. I said that sucks, fix it. Well they had to order the part so it would be a week. Two weeks later they call me and say, well, now that the pump is fixed, it seems that the electronics that control the pump and SMG unit had failed which is most likely why the pump failed and that they would need to replace it to make it work. Wow I said, two major components on a car with 35K miles on it, that is weird please fix it. Two weeks later, and I cannot even tell you how many excuses and the dealer calls me to tell me its ready, I can pick it up at 5.
Well I get in the car, start it up, and all seems well. Drive the car away and it is different, wont shift until you get to 4K no matter what mode your in, now you guys now SMG, if you lug it she will shift to sixth gear under 25mph if you let her. Back to the dealer and they tell me that because of the reinstall of the program the car has to learn how to shift and that this is normal. Whatever, I drive home with my high revving car.
This happens to be Friday night so on Monday morning the car goes back to dealer. Take a drive with the shop foreman and he agrees something is not right. Two weeks go by and they call and tell me the clutch is bad and needs to be replaced or the system will not learn. I say, could this whole issue have been caused by the bad clutch and he says there is no way to tell.
To end a very long and aggravating story, nearly four months and 9 thousand dollars to replace every system in the transmission minus the trans itself and the car is better.
Well, too much for me, and with the lack of attention after numerous calls and emails to BMWUSA I fire sold my car, and took nearly a $15K hit.
I really want a new M3 but will definitely be trigger shy when the time comes.
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:29 AM   #13
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^^^^^

Jesus christ.
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:34 AM   #14
tim-m3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E46M34ME View Post
Well I want to start by saying that bar none, my SMG E46 was by far the favorite car I have owned to date. It was the third M I have owned, the first was an E36, the second a 03 six speed manual convert, and the last an 02 SMG hardtop.
I bought the car second hand through the dealer, with 14k miles on it. The car was immaculate, unmolested minus some radio mods, DVD player and TV tuner, and 19" BBS to fit the big brake kit.
The car did not have the 100k warranty and the dealer would not sell it too me because I was not the original owner. The car worked flawlessly, the SMG seemed perfect with the same clunks and noises they say are normal. In a two-year period, I put approx. 20K miles on it. One day, like any other I drove the car my usual commute and parked it in front of my house. Five minutes later I returned to my car to leave again. I put the key in the ignition and turned it to the start position. All the lights came on normal, the radio came to life but the car did not start, no clicks, no noises just would not start like a neutral safety switch had been clicked. I tried everything with no luck. I had to run so I jumped in my Tacoma and rolled. The next morning I call the tow truck to meet me and headed out to my car. I thought I would try again and to my surprise the car started right up. Drove the car and all was normal. Car acted perfect for a day and I drove it to the dealer who scanned it and said all was ok, thought maybe the hood switch had malfunctioned but was better now.
3 days later, and whamo, same ****, no start again! Called the truck and sent the car to BMW. When it arrived there they called me and said although my car was far under the warranty on mileage because it was a month over on time they would not cover the work and needed my ok to proceed, just my luck, but I need my car so fix it.
3 days later, BMW calls and informs me that the hydraulic pump had failed and it needed to be replaced. I said that sucks, fix it. Well they had to order the part so it would be a week. Two weeks later they call me and say, well, now that the pump is fixed, it seems that the electronics that control the pump and SMG unit had failed which is most likely why the pump failed and that they would need to replace it to make it work. Wow I said, two major components on a car with 35K miles on it, that is weird please fix it. Two weeks later, and I cannot even tell you how many excuses and the dealer calls me to tell me its ready, I can pick it up at 5.
Well I get in the car, start it up, and all seems well. Drive the car away and it is different, wont shift until you get to 4K no matter what mode your in, now you guys now SMG, if you lug it she will shift to sixth gear under 25mph if you let her. Back to the dealer and they tell me that because of the reinstall of the program the car has to learn how to shift and that this is normal. Whatever, I drive home with my high revving car.
This happens to be Friday night so on Monday morning the car goes back to dealer. Take a drive with the shop foreman and he agrees something is not right. Two weeks go by and they call and tell me the clutch is bad and needs to be replaced or the system will not learn. I say, could this whole issue have been caused by the bad clutch and he says there is no way to tell.
To end a very long and aggravating story, nearly four months and 9 thousand dollars to replace every system in the transmission minus the trans itself and the car is better.
Well, too much for me, and with the lack of attention after numerous calls and emails to BMWUSA I fire sold my car, and took nearly a $15K hit.
I really want a new M3 but will definitely be trigger shy when the time comes.
WOW, thats really unfortunate! I am sorry to heat of your ordeal....the M3 is a really amazing car and it must be frustrating going through such a bad experience. But it can only get better! Your hesitance is understandable but dont let it get to you
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:41 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soulchild View Post
hahaha.. right
???
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:51 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E46M34ME View Post
Well I want to start by saying that bar none, my SMG E46 was by far the favorite car I have owned to date. It was the third M I have owned, the first was an E36, the second a 03 six speed manual convert, and the last an 02 SMG hardtop.
I bought the car second hand through the dealer, with 14k miles on it. The car was immaculate, unmolested minus some radio mods, DVD player and TV tuner, and 19" BBS to fit the big brake kit.
The car did not have the 100k warranty and the dealer would not sell it too me because I was not the original owner. The car worked flawlessly, the SMG seemed perfect with the same clunks and noises they say are normal. In a two-year period, I put approx. 20K miles on it. One day, like any other I drove the car my usual commute and parked it in front of my house. Five minutes later I returned to my car to leave again. I put the key in the ignition and turned it to the start position. All the lights came on normal, the radio came to life but the car did not start, no clicks, no noises just would not start like a neutral safety switch had been clicked. I tried everything with no luck. I had to run so I jumped in my Tacoma and rolled. The next morning I call the tow truck to meet me and headed out to my car. I thought I would try again and to my surprise the car started right up. Drove the car and all was normal. Car acted perfect for a day and I drove it to the dealer who scanned it and said all was ok, thought maybe the hood switch had malfunctioned but was better now.
3 days later, and whamo, same ****, no start again! Called the truck and sent the car to BMW. When it arrived there they called me and said although my car was far under the warranty on mileage because it was a month over on time they would not cover the work and needed my ok to proceed, just my luck, but I need my car so fix it.
3 days later, BMW calls and informs me that the hydraulic pump had failed and it needed to be replaced. I said that sucks, fix it. Well they had to order the part so it would be a week. Two weeks later they call me and say, well, now that the pump is fixed, it seems that the electronics that control the pump and SMG unit had failed which is most likely why the pump failed and that they would need to replace it to make it work. Wow I said, two major components on a car with 35K miles on it, that is weird please fix it. Two weeks later, and I cannot even tell you how many excuses and the dealer calls me to tell me its ready, I can pick it up at 5.
Well I get in the car, start it up, and all seems well. Drive the car away and it is different, wont shift until you get to 4K no matter what mode your in, now you guys now SMG, if you lug it she will shift to sixth gear under 25mph if you let her. Back to the dealer and they tell me that because of the reinstall of the program the car has to learn how to shift and that this is normal. Whatever, I drive home with my high revving car.
This happens to be Friday night so on Monday morning the car goes back to dealer. Take a drive with the shop foreman and he agrees something is not right. Two weeks go by and they call and tell me the clutch is bad and needs to be replaced or the system will not learn. I say, could this whole issue have been caused by the bad clutch and he says there is no way to tell.
To end a very long and aggravating story, nearly four months and 9 thousand dollars to replace every system in the transmission minus the trans itself and the car is better.
Well, too much for me, and with the lack of attention after numerous calls and emails to BMWUSA I fire sold my car, and took nearly a $15K hit.
I really want a new M3 but will definitely be trigger shy when the time comes.
Its funny, ive reads too many posts like this.

SMG in theory would be great, But im scared of buying one out of warranty. Its no wonder BMW scrapped it, and went with DSG.
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Old 02-25-2008, 07:50 AM   #17
nradbmw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E46M34ME View Post
Well I want to start by saying that bar none, my SMG E46 was by far the favorite car I have owned to date. It was the third M I have owned, the first was an E36, the second a 03 six speed manual convert, and the last an 02 SMG hardtop.
I bought the car second hand through the dealer, with 14k miles on it. The car was immaculate, unmolested minus some radio mods, DVD player and TV tuner, and 19" BBS to fit the big brake kit.
The car did not have the 100k warranty and the dealer would not sell it too me because I was not the original owner. The car worked flawlessly, the SMG seemed perfect with the same clunks and noises they say are normal. In a two-year period, I put approx. 20K miles on it. One day, like any other I drove the car my usual commute and parked it in front of my house. Five minutes later I returned to my car to leave again. I put the key in the ignition and turned it to the start position. All the lights came on normal, the radio came to life but the car did not start, no clicks, no noises just would not start like a neutral safety switch had been clicked. I tried everything with no luck. I had to run so I jumped in my Tacoma and rolled. The next morning I call the tow truck to meet me and headed out to my car. I thought I would try again and to my surprise the car started right up. Drove the car and all was normal. Car acted perfect for a day and I drove it to the dealer who scanned it and said all was ok, thought maybe the hood switch had malfunctioned but was better now.
3 days later, and whamo, same ****, no start again! Called the truck and sent the car to BMW. When it arrived there they called me and said although my car was far under the warranty on mileage because it was a month over on time they would not cover the work and needed my ok to proceed, just my luck, but I need my car so fix it.
3 days later, BMW calls and informs me that the hydraulic pump had failed and it needed to be replaced. I said that sucks, fix it. Well they had to order the part so it would be a week. Two weeks later they call me and say, well, now that the pump is fixed, it seems that the electronics that control the pump and SMG unit had failed which is most likely why the pump failed and that they would need to replace it to make it work. Wow I said, two major components on a car with 35K miles on it, that is weird please fix it. Two weeks later, and I cannot even tell you how many excuses and the dealer calls me to tell me its ready, I can pick it up at 5.
Well I get in the car, start it up, and all seems well. Drive the car away and it is different, wont shift until you get to 4K no matter what mode your in, now you guys now SMG, if you lug it she will shift to sixth gear under 25mph if you let her. Back to the dealer and they tell me that because of the reinstall of the program the car has to learn how to shift and that this is normal. Whatever, I drive home with my high revving car.
This happens to be Friday night so on Monday morning the car goes back to dealer. Take a drive with the shop foreman and he agrees something is not right. Two weeks go by and they call and tell me the clutch is bad and needs to be replaced or the system will not learn. I say, could this whole issue have been caused by the bad clutch and he says there is no way to tell.
To end a very long and aggravating story, nearly four months and 9 thousand dollars to replace every system in the transmission minus the trans itself and the car is better.
Well, too much for me, and with the lack of attention after numerous calls and emails to BMWUSA I fire sold my car, and took nearly a $15K hit.
I really want a new M3 but will definitely be trigger shy when the time comes.
Gawd, that sucked. I wonder how I can figure out how healthy my SMG is? Take it to the dealer and complain about something in the SMG and just to get them looking into it, maybe they will find something?
Probably not.
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xXMaGNUSXx View Post
???
330's DONT come with SMG my friend! its just a plain ol auto
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Old 02-25-2008, 02:08 PM   #19
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330's DONT come with SMG my friend! its just a plain ol auto
There was an option called "SSG". It's like "SMG" from what I heard, but limited to "Drive Logic level S3" on the M3. Here is a quick google, http://www.bmwclub.org.hk/news/0024.htm
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Old 02-25-2008, 02:18 PM   #20
xXMaGNUSXx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dissto View Post
330's DONT come with SMG my friend! its just a plain ol auto
Um...you have no idea what you're talking about.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=111993

http://www.automobil-magazin.de/bmw33cd.htm

They called it SMG in the US, SSG all others for the non-M cars.

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