JGi3
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jul 01, 2017 3:50 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:31 am

I'm new to this forum but came here mostly because of the random drivetrain malfunction warning I've been getting on my 2014 I3 BEV. I purchased the car CPO about 3 months ago with only 2200 miles. The drivetrain malfunction came on at some point in the first month of ownership but quickly went away. Beyond the warning, there were no issues and there never have been with subsequent drivetrain warnings. I now have about 6500 miles and the warning has come and gone randomly on about 6 occasions I would say. It's been to the dealership once about a month ago where they were able to see that the events had occurred in the past, but couldn't replicate the error and were unable to fix the issue. Coolant levels were fine, it had the latest firmware updates and no other issues were found. It's going back to the dealership this Wednesday where I'm expecting it will remain undiagnosed and unfixed again.

The warning has come on inconsistently except when after washing it one weekend, the warning came on for about 4 days straight when the charge had completed, making me wonder if it wasn't related to some kind of moisture issue. It went away by about the 5th day. The weather was hot and might have caused steam ingress as a result of the washing. Hard to say though because it's come on other times when it had been seemingly dry.

Something I just noticed that may or may not be related, is that after a longer trip (35 miles or so) the car will display a battery SOC of 67% at the end of the drive before turning off the car. If I go to turn on the car a few minutes later (or even check the charge level from the app) it may drop 5-6% to 60% or 61%. I've attributed this to pack rebalancing, but that seems like quite a drop...

I wanted to share my experience and of course would love to solve this issue as the the i3 is a fantastic car. My last car was the Nissan leaf and it was nearly flawless for 50,000 miles. I don't expect the same from a BMW, but am hoping for a relatively trouble free experience. Beyond this annoyance, I haven't had any other problems. I'm guessing that given the length of this discussion it's unlikely to be solved soon but would appreciate any input. Thanks in advance for any help!

MoreliaViridis
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:14 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:28 pm

My other original post in on page 10. The condition happened after use of the REX, charge. Basically, engine light went on along with drivetrain malfunction warning, malfunction warning went off then engine light went off.

I then used the car for a couple days, charging with in garage level 2 charger with all warnings off while not using the REX. I thought I'd to try and get some warning lights back on, so ran the battery down to have the REX activate. It did run for a few miles before I got home, no warnings or engine light. I parked in the garage, charged on a level 2 charger for a few minutes, unplugged the charger, turned on the car and the engine light was on without any other warnings and the system check saying "all systems OK". I drove the car about 10 miles with the engine light on and the REX ran to support the demand. I got home, plugged in the level 2 charger to full charge. Engine light still on at that point the next morning. I drove to work. Engine light still on. Currently our weather has been in the 108F to 120F range and very dry. I had not washed the car at any point when the warning lights came on. I figured I'd drive the car through the car wash and see if the humidity or rapid cooling of outside air did anything. The engine light is still on and the in center dash system check says everything is OK.

I'm guessing the little engine light is going to turn off again at some point, but it's on for now.

castigan
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 2:14 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:25 am

ive had it a few times happen to my 2014 rex. today it was at BMW who informed me mine will be the first one in New Zealand to have the rex motor/generator replaced !

asokadas
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:08 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:35 pm

asokadas wrote:i had this problem two months after buying suddenly i could not start drive train issue comes after several attempts i could engage gears. after a kilometer or so suddenly the error massage came on and engine stopped completely ( In the middle of heave traffic) 24 hotline did not answer.after several attempts of switching off and switching on I could manage to get to the service center. now it is being looked at and they seem to think i had not charged it every day to maximum ( i was charging every other-day you see) I was not told that one should charge everyday and you must charge it full every-time i am thoroughly disgusted with the assistance although i liked the car at least the first 2000 km
asoka

the agent tells me now one of the cells in the battery is busted. they are waiting for a replacement; just a cell replaced will it do the trick? doesn't the whole battery needs to be replaced?

alohart
Posts: 1569
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:43 am

asokadas wrote:the agent tells me now one of the cells in the battery is busted. they are waiting for a replacement; just a cell replaced will it do the trick? doesn't the whole battery needs to be replaced?

There are 96 cells in an i3 battery pack. 12 cells are packaged into 8 replaceable modules. An individual cell cannot be replaced, so it is likely that one of your cell modules is being replaced, maybe because one of the cells in that module is bad. BMW designed the i3's battery pack so that a problem with 1 cell could be fixed by replacing the module containing that cell rather than the entire battery pack.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

MoreliaViridis
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:14 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:47 am

MoreliaViridis wrote:My other original post in on page 10. The condition happened after use of the REX, charge. Basically, engine light went on along with drivetrain malfunction warning, malfunction warning went off then engine light went off.

I then used the car for a couple days, charging with in garage level 2 charger with all warnings off while not using the REX. I thought I'd to try and get some warning lights back on, so ran the battery down to have the REX activate. It did run for a few miles before I got home, no warnings or engine light. I parked in the garage, charged on a level 2 charger for a few minutes, unplugged the charger, turned on the car and the engine light was on without any other warnings and the system check saying "all systems OK". I drove the car about 10 miles with the engine light on and the REX ran to support the demand. I got home, plugged in the level 2 charger to full charge. Engine light still on at that point the next morning. I drove to work. Engine light still on. Currently our weather has been in the 108F to 120F range and very dry. I had not washed the car at any point when the warning lights came on. I figured I'd drive the car through the car wash and see if the humidity or rapid cooling of outside air did anything. The engine light is still on and the in center dash system check says everything is OK.

I'm guessing the little engine light is going to turn off again at some point, but it's on for now.



Here's an update on my last post quoted above.

The light turned off on its own. The light then turned back on a couple days later. I went to the dealer for a quick charge and some snacks at the compliment area. While there I asked about the engine light. They were quite nice. The service main guy sat down in my car while I explained pretty much every event mentioned in my previous posts. Man, he was patient and analytical. Fantastic guy. As the vehicle was working normally other than the engine light being on I decided to go home without service for the issue. I should mention there has yet to be a service performed on the car. The light remained on with all systems OK for a couple days through nightly charging cycles on my level 2 charger one night and then on my level 1 charger another. The engine light remained on with all systems OK. That day I went to the dealer for another quick charge and snacks and figured I'd ask the Genius guys about the light. There were two of them there, super nice, and informative, but not any particular idea about the engine light. I then proceeded to go to the quick charge station to leave, used my charge point deal to disconnect, unplugged the quick charger, and drove off. The engine light was then off. I went home that night, charged on level 2 charger, used the car the next day, no light, home that night, charged and the light was on the next morning.

Here's my observation so far. When the light comes on it may occur after charging either part way or fully and either after the REX has been used previously or not used. When the light is on and then shuts off it may occur after charging. It's gone off with both my level 2 charger and the quick charger at the BMW dealer. The REX works normally and the battery fully charges. No doubt as I've not had service the codes for error still exist.

As a side note it's very hot here in Scottsdale, AZ this time of year. I park my car outdoors during the day at work where the parking lot is at least 130F or higher in the middle of the day. It's hot enough for the warnings to occur which lead the car to believe pedestrians and other obstacles are around to be driven over. That condition can be duplicated each time I put the sun screen in the windshield and the car sits in the sun. The waring always disappears after you drive the car to cool the thing down a bit, shut off the car and start it again.

Gazza1
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jul 18, 2017 2:35 am

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Tue Jul 18, 2017 3:33 am

Just bought a 2014 i3 REx from AutoLink in Auckland last Saturday 15 July.
Unfortunately joined the "Drive train malfunction error" group on the trip home to Tauranga!
However, we are being very well treated by dealer and i3 is now at BMW Auckland.
I'm awaiting outcome, and so very interested in your story, Castigan, given that "BMW informed me mine will be the first one in New Zealand to have the rex motor/generator replaced !".
Gazza1

durtkillon
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:55 pm

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:00 pm

I have a 2014 REX that I purchased last year with 14K miles. I had the drivetrain malfunction error, followed by a message to pull the car over and call for service. The car actually stopped dead in it's tracks as I pulled over. It occurred just as the REX should have kicked on. During the previous week, I was getting check engine lights intermittently with no additional text.

It has been in the shop for 3 weeks and I just got it back today. The records indicate that they replaced two key parts:

12368688838 Exchange Electric Motor
12328662295 Base control unit

In the text they do not mention that the motor was replaced. The indicated that they first replaced the EME, topped off coolant and did an alignment. They then got an engine malfunction test during the test drive. By this time the issue had been escalated to BMW engineers and they were directed to replace the REME, which seems to have fixed the issue.

The problem I have is that the description of the parts on the invoice does not match the text from the technician. I have no clue what an REME is and why they billed BMW for an electric motor. It's also not clear if the EME was installed, but then removed because there is only one controller on the invoice (called a base controller). The person I interfaced with at the dealership was unable to explain any of it, much to my frustration. The car, however is fixed and all costs were covered under warrantee at a cost of almost $10K.

bwilson4web
Forum Supporter
Posts: 667
Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:59 pm
Location: Huntsville, AL

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Wed Aug 16, 2017 12:39 am

RATS!!!

I've joined the club.

Bob Wilson
20k/27k mi 2014 BMW i3-REx
10k/10k mi 2017 Prius Prime

bwilson4web
Forum Supporter
Posts: 667
Joined: Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:59 pm
Location: Huntsville, AL

Re: How many have had the drive train malfunction error?

Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:19 pm

bwilson4web wrote:RATS!!!

I've joined the club.

GOOD NEWS! Low oil.

Bob Wilson
20k/27k mi 2014 BMW i3-REx
10k/10k mi 2017 Prius Prime

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