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Old 29th December 2008, 12:11   #1
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Default 7 Days old BMW 320i- Sensor issue: solved!

As some of you might know that i recently got the 320i. On Thursday ie 26th Dec i decided to take it to Tirupati from Bangalore.
On our way back (10:00 PM), a strange Yellow warning symbol started blinking on the Trip screen (at intervals of 10 minutes, which then reduced and became every 2 minutes). I couldnt make out what that symbol was and so as to not take any chances, i decided to stop the car (in the middle of almost nowhere) and check the manual. Manual mentioned it as "Car cannot run at full capacity, drive as moderate speeds and give it at the service center ASAP". On the Manual, just below this entry was the same symbol with Red Light and it said "Your car cannot go any further. Stop the car immediately." Luckily mine was yellow. We were still about 100Kms away from bangalore.
For obviousl reasons this thing had me perspiring badly at 13 degrees of the night, , cos i was with my family and hadntl seen anything for past 6-7 Kms and guess nothing might be there for another 5 Kms.

I decided to call my sales guy from the dealership. Even he couldnt guess what it could be but asked for couple minutes to check with his service team and get back. He called back asking me to get down of the car and stop the engine and lock it for 10 minutes so as to reset the computer. His doubt was that there might be some fault with Engine related Sensor and that may be misbehaving.

I did that and started again and got going. The sign didnt come up again until about 25 Kms remainging for Bangalore. I did the stopping activity again and then continued the journey and reached home . My Sales friend remained in touch until i reached home.

I wanna know what could be wrong, if anyone can guess. Also is this normal/ acceptable for a new car in preminum segment? Could it be due to Fuel quality? while going i had Shell's premium petrol in the tank, while coming back, i had filled "Speed" from somwhere near Tirupati.
I hope there is no problem with engine, but then it is utterly stupid and unreliable if sensors act this way giving wrong SoS calls.

My car is going to be picked up today for Service so i will know from them then but again i wanted to check on forum on what do you guys suggest i should do.

And yes lastly one important note, We went to Tirupati but due to heavy rush, couldnt manage to get the Darshan . Could that be a reason ?? :-(.

Last edited by GTO : 29th December 2008 at 12:30. Reason: Only two smilies per post allowed. No inappropriate language either.
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Old 29th December 2008, 12:24   #2
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Your Car's ECU apparently shifted to 'limp' mode

If the ECU senses any error at any of the sensors the light will illuminate and the ECU will only allow the engine to run at reduced power to "limp" to a service facility without further damage to the engine.
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Old 29th December 2008, 12:25   #3
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Damn, this is shocking ! Make sure you make a BIG noise on this and if problem is not sorted out in the first repair DEMAND a new car. Infact give them a feeler of the same already so that they know this is unacceptable.

I suspect that the PDI was not completed properly,IMO.

P.S: Please stay away from premium fuels such as speed ! It has been mentioned all over the forum, especially for german cars its a big no no.

Last edited by Sahil : 29th December 2008 at 12:28.
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Old 29th December 2008, 12:33   #4
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Sucks man! The Germans are really going from bad to worse. The 320i being brand new, I'd say it shouldn't be anything too serious. But a limping engine is the last thing you'd expect of your brand new 30 lakh car.

Strangely, we have been discussing exactly the same European car issue since last evening here!! Do update us once the source of the problem has been found.
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Old 29th December 2008, 12:33   #5
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I suspect it could be bad fuel quality which may have triggered the warning lamp. Hope there's nothing more to it. Do keep us posted
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Old 29th December 2008, 13:36   #6
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Its the ECU that shifted into another mode as pointed out by Technocrat. Actually its quite surprising that after the getting in and out business, one can travel 75 kms. and then do the same again.
If fuel quality is the suspect, then the yellow signal should come up before 75 kms.

Regarding fuel, avoid filing on highways as much as possible. Yes its true that it is not entirely impossible to avoid this, but should be as less as possible. In this case it could be fuel quality that made that made the ECU make your car so into " low " mode or safe mode ( I dont know the exact word ).

Hope this turns out to be fuel related issue.
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Old 29th December 2008, 13:42   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diki24 View Post
Could it be due to Fuel quality? while going i had Shell's premium petrol in the tank, while coming back, i had filled "Speed" from somwhere near Tirupati.
I hope there is no problem with engine, but then it is utterly stupid and unreliable if sensors act this way giving wrong SoS calls.
In all probabllity its a case of fuel contamination. Or a sensor has failed triggering the malfunction. I wouldn't worry too much. The system either did its job of alerting you or in a worst case scenario its a false alarm on account of a faulty sensor

Last edited by DKG : 29th December 2008 at 13:43.
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Old 29th December 2008, 13:50   #8
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Suspect the fuel that you had filled at Tirupati! Guess the vehicle was just being safe. And since you were able to ride back most of the distance, by doing a reset, guess the sensor acted up when it was too much to bear.

But then, should this happen in the first place? Is not BMW selling cars here for long enough to know about the quality of fuel? Or do they expect Shell to provide at all locations for their cars???

All the best at the service center, Diki24.

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Originally Posted by diki24 View Post
...And yes lastly one important note, We went to Tirupati but due to heavy rush, couldnt manage to get the Darshan . Could that be a reason ?? :-(.
I guess it was because of your attempt that you were able to reach back home safely!
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Old 29th December 2008, 13:52   #9
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Thanks guys for view points.

while i tried avoiding the shady looking ones and went to the best looking Petrol Bunk, that i could find. Visual cues were the only elements available to me to judge.
To and Fro journey to Tirupati is around 520 Kms, the tank capacity being 60 Ltrs, it is just about the capacity to go and come back.
Is keeping a Separate gallon/tank for petrol in your boot, advisable. Sounds scary for sure, do people do that??

I agree with GTO, for Cars, i think the Fuel check should be a basic feature and definitely for premium cars. Having to abandon your car just becasue of fuel quality sounds unreasonable, atleast in india. How would a customer know what is good or bad fuel. I never had any Fuel contamination issues with my Ford ikon, ever.
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Old 29th December 2008, 13:52   #10
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Quite surprising though, these luxury cars are tested at extreme conditions for reliability. Such an exception is very rare. Anyways best of luck friend...
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Old 29th December 2008, 14:43   #11
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Why don't you post the name / location of the fuel station, so that others familiar with the place may give a "certificate" about fuel quality here?
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Old 29th December 2008, 14:53   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaCkSeAtDrIVeR View Post
Why don't you post the name / location of the fuel station, so that others familiar with the place may give a "certificate" about fuel quality here?

I really didnt note the name and couldnt take the Reciept (He took around 10 mins to fill and then kept searching for the reciept book after which i lost patience and left). It was around 130/140 Kms from Tiruapati on Bangalore-Tirupati road.

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I guess it was because of your attempt that you were able to reach back home safely!
HappyWheels, Thats very well Put, thanks . Atleast some positive to take from the trip.

Last edited by aah78 : 31st December 2008 at 00:29. Reason: Posts merged.
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Old 29th December 2008, 15:07   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diki24 View Post
...Is keeping a Separate gallon/tank for petrol in your boot, advisable. Sounds scary for sure, do people do that??...
Don't even dream of this, please! Totally unsafe and not worth the risk. And you will also run into trouble if there is a check going on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BaCkSeAtDrIVeR View Post
Why don't you post the name / location of the fuel station, so that others familiar with the place may give a "certificate" about fuel quality here?
Good suggestion.
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Old 29th December 2008, 18:44   #14
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Default Don't worry it should be a minor problem

Tell them to give you a detail of the problem in written.
A car in the end is a mechanical object and a fault can occur at any time irrespective of brand and computer so hopefully this shouldn't be a big issue.
Lets just hope the problem gets sorted and please keep us updated.
Cheerscheers:
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Old 29th December 2008, 19:05   #15
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Ouch. Thats bad.
a 30 lakh car.
7 days and this problem.

Demand a replacement car and take the issue to auto car as well if needed.
They help quite a lot.
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