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Discussion Starter #1
I just bought an 2004 SMG M3 (a week ago) and the car slips out of 4th a little into another gear. It has over 100k miles on it. I have been reading about SMG on the board and has scared the crap out of me. Should I start saving my pennies for a new tranny?? I see all the negative posts on the board about problems but how many people have high miles and no problems with their SMG?
 

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I have a 2002 SMG with 108k miles. I have not had a problem to date (knocks on wood)--there was also no indications of problems in the car's service history. I don't follow what you are saying, the car slips out of 4th and grinds (not good)? Or do the rpms surge when you give it more gas (clutch slipping)?

I am assuming that the clutch is slipping. This does not require a new transmission and could be as simple as recalibrating the clutch adaptation--which has to be done with a GT1 or somethign similar. You can also do a 'soft' reset of the clutch by accelerating to 45 mph, putting the car in neutral, pull both paddles on the steering wheel for 10 seconds, then put the car back into gear and carry on as normal . You will not get any feedback from the car to tell you the reset happened, but it will.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have a 2002 SMG with 108k miles. I have not had a problem to date (knocks on wood)--there was also no indications of problems in the car's service history. I don't follow what you are saying, the car slips out of 4th and grinds (not good)? Or do the rpms surge when you give it more gas (clutch slipping)?

I am assuming that the clutch is slipping. This does not require a new transmission and could be as simple as recalibrating the clutch adaptation--which has to be done with a GT1 or somethign similar. You can also do a 'soft' reset of the clutch by accelerating to 45 mph, putting the car in neutral, pull both paddles on the steering wheel for 10 seconds, then put the car back into gear and carry on as normal . You will not get any feedback from the car to tell you the reset happened, but it will.
Sorry was not clear, the clutch slips RPM's surge. I will try a soft reset if it slips again...
 

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Sorry was not clear, the clutch slips RPM's surge. I will try a soft reset if it slips again...
That is a lot better than the car slipping out of gear--trust me. You can find the OEM clutch kit for less than $400. The bad news is the SMG system has to be bled and recalibrated through a computer (GT1 or equivalent). If you are handy, you can perform the majority of the labor yourself and have it towed to a shop for the rebleed and recalibration. This will save you a lot of money.

Or you can have a shop replace the clutch and expected ~$1500 bill.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wish I would have researched the SMG more, if I knew all these issues were so mainstream and BMW had not issued a recall to fix them I would have stuck to the 6MT.
 

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The clutch will also wear out on the 6mt... The calibration/bleed for the smg is relatively inexpensive, so don't feel too bad.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
If I take it to the dealer are they able to predict if a failure is on its way or is the SMG component failures totally random? Also is there any extended warranty that will actually cover this if I purchase it?? Just to safeguard in the future. I have usually heard these warranties are crap and look for loop holes to squeeze out of. But just wondering if anyone has gotten one to replace the SMG if necessary in the future...
 

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The dealer is not able to predict a failing part until it is broken. I can't help you with the 3rd party warranty, but BMW does not offer one to my knowledge.

Don't worry about it, the problem you are having is not a SMG only problem. The same issue will happen with the 6mt. If fact, the 6mt and SMG use the same transmission and clutch. One has a human operated clucth and shifter, while the other uses a computer and hydraulics.
 

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To answer your main question: "Is the SMG worth the extra expenses involved"? ..particularly if there is a major failure.

That is a very personal question. I love my SMG so much I would never ever consider to go back to a foot clutch...ever. I consider the versatility of my SMG to be the best thing that ever happened to the driving experience.

I did have a tuner come in a get into the SMG software and decrease the shift time so it is like lightning now...SO FAST! And he re set my launch RPM as well to 3400RPM. Thats cool. I can snap through the gears like an F1 car now.....or i can put it in auto and soften things up so it shifts like a lexus...well not exactly like a Lexus, but good enough to take Granny for a nice ride.
I use every option that BMW gave me on the SMG.

Then there are the haters who wouldnt drive an SMG if you gave it them. No one is right or wrong, its just personal preference. But you do need to take pause when the quickest track cars in the world, Indy and Formula 1 all did away with foot clutches. Just saying.

The answer is then this: The SMG is only worth it if you feel that it is. Period.:woot:
 
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