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  #1  
Old 02-15-2020, 07:49 PM
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Dead! Couldn't tow X5 because could not move shift into neutral.

Happy Post Valentine's Day my X5 Outpost friends!
Looking for some advice.
My 2011 X5 3.5 gas automatic would not start after a day of trips starting and stopping all day,
Our last errand was to the local pharmacy and went I came out pushed in the key, pressed the start button, nothing happened. No crank, but lights are on, radio on, so first, we try jumping it. A guy who works at the pharmacy has cables that were pretty thin and no luck. The store is in my town and the pharmacist has a delivery guy who drove my wife and I home, got my cables and a start block I keep fully charged. Still nothing. By now I've decided it's time to call triple A to have the car towed to the shop, BUT there was no way to put the car in neutral! So we watched a couple of videos on YouTube and now I know what that red handle is for (basically to take the cap off the cupholders to see a nut). But what next, there was a story about jacking up the car, but remember run-flat cars have no jack so,,,,,,,,,

Can someone tell me how to override the shifter so I can put it in neutral?

It's flippin' cold here in NJ, but should warm up tomorrow. I don't think I have had this battery for 5 years so it might be covered by some remaining warranty. I am thinking I will pull the battery out. I have an industrial 12V charger, and see what I get. Maybe I'll get lucky and it'll hold a charge and start. BTW, I can hear the fuel pump starting. I did consider bad gas as I filled up last night, but as I said we did lots of starts and stops and I didn't feel any bucking or attempts to stall.

One more thing.... 2 weeks ago I had a whine coming from one of the pulleys. Turned out to be the belt tensioner. Is it possible that the Indy did not tighten up the alternator bracket and I am not getting a solid charge (combined with freezing temperatures...)

Sorry for the rambling but I drank a lot of coffee waiting for AAA :-)

Thanks
ed in Metuchen
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  #2  
Old 02-15-2020, 09:13 PM
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Procedure to put into neutral is the owners manual on my E60 & E70.
You might have a bad ground cable from engine to chassis. Connect (-) jumper cable /jump pack directly to engine block, with (+) positive on underhood jump connection.
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Old 02-15-2020, 09:52 PM
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Dead! Couldn't tow X5 because could not move shift into neutral.

Depending on the car, the drink cup holder has a rubber insert you remove - the red T-Handle in the boot (if fitted) goes into the slot to override the gearbox into neutral.

If you dont have the t-handle in the boot (mine doesnt) - you need access to the underside of the vehicle - theres a procedure to put the gearbox in neutral manually using an allen key.

Check owners manual - good luck!

https://youtu.be/Gj6zghiVn5M

2012 E70 50i
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Old 02-15-2020, 10:21 PM
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A good tow driver should carry a set of wheeled wedges that you fit under the tires to allow the vehicle to be winched onto the back of the truck.
That's how they got our E70 out of the garage when it was bricked.
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Old 02-16-2020, 01:01 AM
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Wow. Did anyone actually read my post?

I’ll try to answer all the much appreciated (however unhelpful) answered
1) Red T Handle - From everything I have read and watched on you tube, the red T opens a secret hole under the left cupholder. At one point, there was a hidden access where you slid out the key from the key fob and unlocked a cylinder that provided access to a port where you could turn and unlock the shifter. I was able to get the cap off, but there is no cylinder and pushing and twisting did nothing.
While I know (because as I mentioned I have seen all the YouTube videos) that taking off the transmission cover is a viable option, remember I have no jack thanks to run-flat tires, no 8mm sockets with me to drop the transmission cover, and it is 28 degrees. Assume when I said “I have seen all the YouTube videos” it includes the one you provided. Appreciated, but No help
2) I never use anything but a place on the engine block for ground. I thought everyone knew that. Appreciated, No help
3) Zulu, I think you were part of the club before they made us change our name. Seriously though how does rating the tow driver answer my questions in the slightest? This makes no sense. No help

Let me try to be clear now that I have calmed down a bit.

If you KNOW an answer to the question being asked, make sure it actually answers the question. It might be some folks are from different countries, where the model is different. However, by a quick look at my icon, you’d know that I have bern involved in BMWs and X5’s specifically for a long time. There was a time I would answer questions for newbees here. But I would not offer my opinion on what a “good” tow truck driver should have as an answer. Perhaps where you live every tow truck driver has every conceivable means to lift a “bricked” X5. In NJ where I live, I was lucky to get a flat bed driver who like many, know very little about the inner workings of every make, model and year of every vehicle in the USA.

I already noted I’ve viewed EVERY YouTube video on this topic and yes I have read the manual from cover to cover.

My apologies if I appear ungrateful with the responses so far, but re-read my original post and tell me how you have a solution.

I would greatly appreciate anyone from the “Old X5” group of friends to please respond. They know how to answer.

I remain sincerely thankful for those who replied. I’m simply disappointed that you missed the points and frankly did not give me anything (remember this is NJ USA, not the UK or another warmer and easier state in the US to get help) I could actually use to solve the problem.

Cheers !
edco 65 years old and BMW owner and club member for half my life!
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Last edited by edco; 02-16-2020 at 01:16 AM.
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  #6  
Old 02-16-2020, 01:30 AM
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wow.


I sure wanna help you.....


In a just world, Id like to think that AAA showed an hour late...then they screwed up the car winching it up... and finally your mechanic hoses you on the repair.


BMWCCA member half your life? WTF is that important? Do they give out prick awards after 30 years or something?



Cheers!
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Old 02-16-2020, 06:54 AM
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...thanks for the feedback but yeah...we were trying to be as helpful as we can - apologies for not catching the details but yeah - not appropriately worded when you are asking for help ....perhaps send pm’s to your ‘Old Friends’ in future instead of shooting down those trying to help. Good luck


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  #8  
Old 02-16-2020, 12:41 PM
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ard!
You have been a true help to me though I don’t recall if it was here or on the E46 board.
I’m surprised that you reacted that way since I know that I’ve gotten real help from you.
Here’s the point that I guess I failed to communicate:
I cannot get the car in Neutral and from everything I’ve READ and WATCHED, there does not seem to be a way
So telling me to ground the cables differently or that the tow truck should have come better prepared does neither, would you agree?
I am not a prick. I just needed an answer to the problem at hand.Telling someone they shouldn’t have smoked is not the right answer for “Is there any relief for my cough?”
I know the inferences and tone get lost in impersonal connections, but I respect and I said three time appreciate the feedback, just that the ones I got did not help me with the questions I asked.

I am about to go and check the fuses, since I searched on the BImmerfest board and found that either the DME or a fuse (I’ll need to get my notes to be specific about which fuse) is a likely culprit. That’s an example of a specific answer “Check this fuse” not “Read the Manual”.

I’d ask you to go back and see when you provided me with advice in thepast it was spot on and I genuinely appreciated it. I will admonish myself for being brisk in my replies here though.

But I only ask that you read what I was looking for and can point out the “help” that I got in return.
Ed
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Last edited by edco; 02-17-2020 at 02:38 PM.
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Old 02-16-2020, 02:13 PM
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Follow up ANSWER!
To manually put an ‘11 X5 into neutral, lower the transmission shield. You need to jack up the car on the driver’s side. You need an 8MM socket and ratchet, and an hex key to rotate a screw on the passenger side. It is obvious. As you turn the hex screw if the battery has the LEAST bit of power left, you will hear an audible ping. Come out from under the vehicle and you will see GREEN position indicator now shows N. After you have reinstalled the screws that support the transmission splash pan, you can verify the X5 is in fact in neutral by attempting to roll it back slightly. Note: if you have run flat tires, you’ll need to get a jack from somewhere to remove the 8MM splash pan screws. There is NO OTHER WAY! I do hope this helps the next person, in a situation like mine.
Cheers
ed
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Last edited by edco; 02-17-2020 at 02:44 PM.
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