In Reply to: Don't fret too much yet... very frustrating posted by GTBuzz on October 20, 2001 at 13:51:40:
We have the computers that cry wolf, who knows when to believe them. If it tells me my car is on fire I'll just keep driving I guess...
I have a '95 540iA which has done the same thing several, several times over the past few months. The transmissions in the V8s are great trannies but also very particular. Anytime the tranny electronics senses something amiss, sometimes even just the slightest bit, the "Trans Program" error can pop up and the transmission will go into "limp" mode to protect from possible further damage. Your transmission was stuck in fourth gear. The thing is, the problem that the electronics picked up on could be a very minor thing... such as a fluctuation in voltage from the car's electrical system. Most of the time, just as you found, turning the car off and waiting a few seconds will remove the error and the tranny will act fine. I'd wait and see if the error occurs again. If not, just attribute it to a freaky electrical gremlin. If it happens again, the dealer should be able to scan the error codes and see if the problem is worth dealing with. This problem can be very frustrating to diagnose. I've had mine at the dealer twice and no luck yet, although attention given to a couple of other tranny related problems may have cured it for now... I'm hoping. I wouldn't worry about it too much. Search the archives and you'll find that many others have had this happen... it's quite common. Good luck.