Transmission? Or the Computer? on 1993 BMW 740iL

For the past year, every so often my transmission will go into safety mode. The warning light indicates TRANS PROGRAM, and essentially the car still drives just fine and can reach highway speeds, but it just starts from stop really, really slow. This problem typically occurs at the moment I first brake, after not driving the car for a day or so. Then, after I start the car again, let's say at the second phase of a day's errands. The transmission runs fine. My question, is this a failing transmission? Or is this a computer problem? My theory is that the transmission is fine, but the computer is having glitches and I'd imagine to fix a 1993 BMW computer will still cost a small fortune. Any thoughts???

by in Los Angeles, CA on April 20, 2009
2 answers 2 comments
ANSWER by on April 23, 2009
This sounds like a fault has been detected then the transmission is going into a "safe" mode, also called "limp home" mode. This allows you to get the car home, or preferably to a shop where you can have it repaired. You will need to have the diagnostic trouble codes checked to see why the fault is occurring, and have it diagnosed. It can be many things, too many to guess at.
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ANSWER by on September 08, 2010
This is a common problem with BMW 740iL. I recommend that you get a professional indepedent transmission specialist because most people are talked into buying a remanufacturered or rebuilt tranny. The most common problem is the wiring harness for the transmission that is inside the fluid pan. The connectors are in the pan and may have oil leak into them. Have the mechanic replace them and then try it. While the vehicle has the tranny out you may want to replace the rear-main seal to save on labor cost. I know it sounds crazy, but you will also find that the maker of your tranny also makes them for GM. BMW = Big Money Wasted
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COMMENT by on January 04, 2011
thanks
COMMENT by on March 17, 2012
I have found some times a faulty or dirty speed sensor will trigger transfail code.
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