Last post on Dec 12, 2010 at 12:46 PM
You are in the BMW 3-Series
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BMW 3 Series, Coupe
#1 of 37 BMW 328i and 335i - Both use the same 6-speed Automatic Transmission?
Oct 14, 2006 (8:58 am)
Read a thread on bimmerfest.com about the automatic transmissions used on the new BMW 3-series coupe.
Some said the one on 328i is a GM-sourced 6-speed auto transmission while the one on 335i is a much better New ZF 6 transmission. Is this true? I test drove a 328i auto y/day and was impressed with the ride in Sports mode.
However, I'm only interested in the 6-speed stick in both coupes. Just curious why BMW used different auto transmission if it's true? Any insight on this?
#2 of 37 Re: BMW 328i and 335i - Both use the same 6-speed Automatic Transmission? [
Oct 14, 2006 (5:38 pm)
re: Some said the one on 328i is a GM-sourced 6-speed auto transmission while the one on 335i is a much better New ZF 6 transmission. Is this true? I test drove a 328i auto y/day and was impressed with the ride in Sports mode.
GM makes superb automatic transmissions. I have the manual in my 325i but was very impressed by the auto in the 325i and 330i.
#3 of 37 Re: BMW 328i and 335i - Both use the same 6-speed Automatic Transmission? [ [nkeen]
Oct 14, 2006 (7:24 pm)
So the 328i, 325i, and 330i - both sedan and coupe all use GM-sourced automatic transmission? Only the 335i uses the new ZF 6 auto transmission. What's the source then?
Doesn't BMW manufacture its own auto transmissions? Why would it use GM-sourced ones? Cheaper? Better?
Your input is welcome.
#4 of 37 Re: BMW 328i and 335i - Both use the same 6-speed Automatic Transmission? [
Oct 15, 2006 (6:04 am)
Perhaps the GM unit cannot handle the 335i's torque so it was necessary to go to the ZF?
#5 of 37 Re: BMW 328i and 335i - Both use the same 6-speed Automatic Transmission? [ [nkeen]
Oct 15, 2006 (5:27 pm)
That's almost certainly it. High torque equals gears with more face width. An engine that makes its power at high RPMs doesn't have to transmit much torque. Sounds like this twin-turbo setup delivers the torque.
Oct 15, 2006 (9:05 pm)
I hate posting things that I'm not 100% sure of, but here's a stab at what's going on.
I think the GM transmission is a Getrag, a german company bought by GM many years ago. In the E46's, Getrags were used on the 323/325s and ZF trannies were used on the 328/330's. It's very possible that ZF's are beefier, therefore used in higher torque applications, but I'm not sure if that's the reason.
FWIW, I test-drove a 323Ci and bought a 330Ci (both manuals). IMHO, the Getrag was the nicer shifting of the two by a pretty wide margin.
I can't guarantee that this is correct, it's compiled from memory of things I heard/read over 5 years ago.
#7 of 37 clarification
Dec 20, 2006 (4:15 pm)
The current MT's used in the 3 series are designed by ZF. Some 325's now 328's are built by Getrag using the ZF design. The 330 now 335 use the true ZF 6 Speed MT.
Getrag is now partially owned by Ford known as GFT,,, Getrag Ford Transmission.
The 328 gets the new GM six speed, the 335 gets the 2nd generation ZF 6 Speed know as the 6HPTU (Technical Upgrade) which among other features includes significantly faster shift times
#8 of 37 Re: clarification [proeasy1]
Dec 20, 2006 (5:30 pm)
This is good stuff to know. Thanks.
I've got one of the 12 (well, maybe a few more) Lincoln LS's with a manual, and it's a Getrag. Now I know why.
My most likely next car is a BMW 3, so it's good info for that as well.
#9 of 37 335i vs 328i transmission (2007 3 series)
Dec 20, 2006 (6:33 pm)
Over the last two days I test drove the 328i, 328xi, and 335i models at my local dealer. All with six speed auto transmissions. Entering the dealer yesterday I was going to get the 328xi for my wife as we live in the Northwest and have some significant winter storms lately not to mention our typical winter weather pattern and mountainous environment. Anyway, my wife said she'd feel better with the AWD. The 328xi drove well and the auto transmission was smooth with well synchonized shift points. The transmission's sport mode changed the character towards performance enough that it provided a spirited drive. I thought it would work for us....until I drove the 335i. The character of this car is so different and the performance so keen (acceleration is similar to the 911 I used to own though handling is much different)that it is a completely different car from the 328 model. The auto transmission on the 335i provides lightening quick shifts; I didn't even use the paddle shifters since the transmission in sport mode was all I needed at least during an unchaperoned test drive. Driving in a moderate rain, the rear end didn't step out though the rear tires "chirped" a couple times from launch. Not a race car but a thrill to drive nonetheless. I ended up buying the 335i. My advice: don't test drive it if you can't buy it because you'll only leave the dealership frustrated. My only concern and its partly ameliorated because of BMW's 4 year/50,000 mile full service coverage plan is about the durability of the twin Turbos. To my knowledge, BMW has only produced turbo engines for its racing program previously. How they'll hold up after 100k or 200k of "regular driving" remains to be seen.
#10 of 37 Re: 335i vs 328i transmission (2007 3 series) [couloir]
Dec 20, 2006 (6:54 pm)
To my knowledge, BMW has only produced turbo engines for its racing program previously.
BMW has been making Turbocharged Diesel engines for the European market for years. They even made blown gas engines a couple decades ago, although those too were only for the European (and Australian???) market(s).
In the past, I've had turbocharged engines and I've never lost a blower, even with more than 100,000 miles on the clock. My secret? Synthetic oil. Turns out that's one of BMWs secrets as well.