really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
58,213 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

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problem #10

Apr 202012

323 6-cyl

  • miles
Over thousands of complains from many owners. Website is created so that owners can share their disappointments for the same issue. Please visit noreverse.org/.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #9

Dec 012011


  • 90,000 miles
The reverse gear stop working.

- Great Fall, VA, USA

problem #8

Nov 012011

323 6-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
The car transmission will not go in reverse. The issue happens suddenly with no warning, and acts exactly as if you were in neutral gear. There is a dedicated site called www.noreverse.org that documents thousands of cases from BMW owners that have the same problem. BMW North America has acknowledged that its transmissions in vehicles 1999-2003 have this issue, but fails to offer any assistance on this huge safety issue. In November, I pulled out of my driveway normally to drive to work. When I arrive at work and attempted to reverse into the space, the car acted like it was in neutral. The vehicle continues to act this way. All other gears work normal (meaning it drives fine forward), it is just that you cannot engage reverse.

- Ashburn, VA, USA

problem #7

Nov 182011

323 6-cyl

  • 128,000 miles
The car will not go in reverse.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #6

Sep 012011


  • miles
My 2000 3 series BMW has stopped going in reverse. At all. It's very dangerous as I was in traffic yesterday at a red light when a semi truck turned the corner in front of me and needed me to back up. I was stuck behind a van that was able to go in reverse and of course expected me to follow suit, and I couldn't! I've been reading online and all over the world people are having this same problem over and over again with this particular series of BMW. I've only had my car a year. It has a little over 100K miles on it. I absolutely cannot afford the 3-5K it will cost to replace it. There are so many complaints on the web. Please have this recalled before it turns into another Toyota debacle. It's not fair.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #5

Aug 022011


  • 132,000 miles
Reverse gear (automatic transmission) stopped working without warning. Car acts as if it is neutral, engine just revs. Car has been well maintained. Was surprised to find it is a very common occurrence with this model, and that there is a website devoted to the problem (noreverse.org). Also learned that a recall was issued for Cadillac that used the same transmission and had the same problem.

- Columbus, NJ, USA

problem #4

Jun 192010


  • 83,000 miles
The contact owns a 2000 BMW 323ci. The contact stated the vehicle had been parked for approximately twenty minutes when he was informed there was yellow smoke pouring through the interior of the vehicle. Suddenly, the vehicle erupted into twenty foot flames from the dashboard area. The fire department was able to extinguish the fire. A fire report was available. The vehicle was parked next to a building which was partially damaged. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer advised an investigator would further inspect the cause of the failure. The VIN was not available. The failure and current mileage was approximately 83,000.

- Princeton , IL, USA

problem #3

Oct 151999


  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,130 miles
Cylinder head crack - 9/5/03 water pump freeze, drive belt tear/broken - 11/9/01 3 windows (regulator broken) driver side 2 times

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #2

Mar 312004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2000 BMW 328ci stalls every now and then and when I restart it I feel a power loss. Comes and goes. Very pesky problem, makes you feel scared you might get stranded.

- Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #1

Dec 162002


  • miles
While driving the vehicle and applied the brakes the engine will suffer a suddenly acceleration. Dealer has inspected the vehicle and could not duplicate or correct the problem.

- Bronx, NY, USA