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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 08-25-2012, 12:57 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 2
My Ride: 325i
E46 325i Auto / Man mode problem

Hi All,
First time user - great forum site.

I have a 325 auto, when I select manual mode the shifter doesn't seem to move far enough - I have to hold it across to shift up or down. I only have to put very light pressure to hold it across - moves about eighth of an inch (3mm) or even a bit less. All lights and indications work as normal. It has previously worked fine, so I'm thinking something in the shifter mechanism has worn out or come loose. Perhaps even an adjustment? Thanks
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:21 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Indiana
Posts: 2,182
My Ride: 2003 330Ci
Check for a coin or other object in the shifter mechanism.

Pull up on the shift knob to remove it and pull out the shift boot.


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Old 08-25-2012, 11:53 AM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Seattle
Posts: 975
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
I've had an issue verys imilar to this that I have yet to solve.

When I select manual mode, the shifter actually tends to bounce back to auto mode. Once it does stick in manual it does the same sort of thing, not being moved far enough over to shift manually. Is there anything I can do to solve this aside from replace my shifter mechanism?

I have noticed that if it's a warm day, I will have virtually no issues, vs the cold mornings we have the shifter will not stay in manual mode. Is there some sort of cable that can be adjusted that is just expanding enough during warm days?

Keep in mind i mean ambient air temp being warmer (70-80) vs colder (55-65).
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:42 PM   #4
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 2
My Ride: 325i
Nothing in the mechanism

Hi shanneba. No coins or anything I can see in the mechanism. What actually hold it across? When I select to go back to auto mode is does spring across - so what holds it in manual sport / manual mode. Is there another spring or is it a solenoid to hold it?
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