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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yes, I know this topic lives in other threads, some tacked on to others quite old that have nothing to do with the original posting. So here’s my question for the masses. I’ve a 2004 MCS (march build). I took it in for my 10k service and did not request that this particular recall work be done. It was done anyway.

Prior to the upgrade I had NO issues with my MCS. Now I’ve got a very rough idle, which is intermittent, can happen when the engine is completely warmed up, ac is off, good petrol, etc, and the dealer can’t find anything on the diagnostics. I know I am not the only one in an MCS who came away from the ECU upgrade with this problem, but what I want to know is this:

Has anyone who had problems introduced into their MCS during the latest ECU upgrade had your car successfully fixed so it is back to running smoothly?

Both the dealer and MINI USA are telling me they have never heard of such problems and I know that's a crock. I just want my car running as well as it did prior to the service. However, the nearest dealer to me is in another state, so I’m not very willing to keep dropping my car off for them to tinker with it when they supposedly know nothing about the problem and have no guarantees the car will run right. Even more distressing since the problem occurs intermittent and can take a day or so to crop up I'm usually 300 miles away from the dealer!

Someone, please give me some good news. If problems were introduced into your MCS, has it been set right yet? What as done?
 

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I'd vote that your problem is not associated with the software flash - something independent that was coincidental. Or perhaps they dislodged a vacuum hose or something. In any event, I doubt the solution is revert back on the software. You might try disconnecting the battery overnight and see if you can get a software reset just in case there is something odd in the adaptive memory.

FWIIW, I recently was upgraded from V36 to V39.x (not sure exact version but it is the one with the emissions recall) and the car definitely drives better and the small yoyo I had is gone. Overall, I can't imagine a nicer running little 4-banger. Idle is unchanged.

- Mark
 

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I’m with MINI USA. I’m sorry your service experience was not what you expected. We are here to work with you and your Dealer. If you need our assistance, please phone us at (866) ASK MINI and mention Reference # 200435200250 so that we can help you more efficiently.
 

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From what I've read this is yet another software problem that BMW have no answer for - thus the Mini Division post in an attempt to get you off the board.
 

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Same exact problem here with my '04 MCS. You are not alone and this is indeed a ECU SOFTWARE induced problem. Prior to this "crappy" mandatory software update recall, my '04 MCS did not have a single problem with the rough/choppy idle/coughing that seems to be happening every other day on a fully warmed up engine.

This is indeed a MCS concentric problem with software version 38.0. My '02 Cooper CVT also received the same 38.0 update and the car is running smooth as silk, so the choppy idle problem is indeed a programming issue that affects the MCS only.

Next time, i will not do any sofware updates if my car is running fine. Sorry MINIUSA, I just don't trust your "On the fly" software releases. Please fix our cars! :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah MINI division person, I bet your sorry. The reference numbers you all post on these message boards are garbage and you know it. Being naive I inquired about one to a BMW N. America representative. Imagine after 2 weeks of "research" I was left a vague message that was as if everything that person and I had discussed prior, which was supposedly being looked into, was erased from the reps mind.

So my dear friend, ASK MINI has not be "there to help" for me in this instance. Don't even get me started on the first person I taked with at ASK MINI about this issues who made me feel like I interrupted his morning coffee break.

Anyway, if anyone who had problems introduces into their S with the upgrade, and has since had them resolved would mind updating me, I'd greatly appreciate it. I have issues leaving my car in another state for an unspecified amount of time, to have a dealer I don't trust try and fix a problem they don't think exists.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
and having just gotten off the phone with BMW North America, let me just add

"we are not aware that this is an issue. we have no service bulletin on it. you need to speak with the service manager at the dealer." It was rather amusing to listen to the representative back pedal when asked specific questions.
 

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Did the dealer do an ECU reset after updating the software? Either by disconnecting the battery or using the odometer reset?

I know that my 04 MCS ran badly after the v.39 update as well. Once I reset the ECU though, most of the problems disappeared.
 

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Add me to the list

I've been running V.39 for about 6 weeks and have generally felt it to be an improvement in overall smoothness over V.36. However, my '04 MCS has now picked up the sporadic rough idle issue. Naturally it's errattic, and only seems to come up when the engine is warm and when the exterior temp is also warm (80F+). I have noticed that the idle tends to increase slightly to about 1000 RPM when the A/C is on and the fan engages. This feels new to me. I don't remember the idle increase before. It's not a problem, or should I say the problem. The problem is the lumpy/erratic idle. I haven't reported it to my dealer as I'm certain there's nothing they can do about it and I don't want to be BSed. Though I suspect that they should at least record it so that MINIUSA can't claim ignorance of the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
CoryB said:
Did the dealer do an ECU reset after updating the software? Either by disconnecting the battery or using the odometer reset?

I know that my 04 MCS ran badly after the v.39 update as well. Once I reset the ECU though, most of the problems disappeared.
I'm guessing the dealer did since like other have reported my clock had switched to 24 hour time. Also, I did the ECU reset myself (correctly) and it did not help the issues I am having.
 

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I have the rough idle as well. I'm on v38 & the dealer just told me that they can't find anything wrong. I didn't have this rough idle on v36. 28 months after owning this car & I still have issues. Completely unsat! Along with the other problems I've had...you can bet I will never buy a Mini again.
 

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Me too

I have picked up the rough idle issue after getting the software update along with a seat belt tensioner fixed. I called the service department today and have an appointment for the 23rd to get the idle problem looked at.

While I was making the appointment the service guy said that they are receiving a lot of calls about the rough idle problem lately but are unsure of the cause. He mentioned that they would probably upgrade the software to see if that would fix the problem. I told him that I already had the latest version and then described the problem again (occasional rough idle, tapping the accelerator fixes it, warm engine, etc.) He said that fact definitely causes concern and that they would check things out when I get there for the appointment.

I will let everyone know what the outcome is after I get the service done.

:dark: Ted
 

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Ted said:
I have picked up the rough idle issue after getting the software update along with a seat belt tensioner fixed. I called the service department today and have an appointment for the 23rd to get the idle problem looked at.

While I was making the appointment the service guy said that they are receiving a lot of calls about the rough idle problem lately but are unsure of the cause. He mentioned that they would probably upgrade the software to see if that would fix the problem. I told him that I already had the latest version and then described the problem again (occasional rough idle, tapping the accelerator fixes it, warm engine, etc.) He said that fact definitely causes concern and that they would check things out when I get there for the appointment.

I will let everyone know what the outcome is after I get the service done.

:dark: Ted

I talked to the MINIUSA rep today and she informed me that they are well aware of the rough idle issue post V39 recall software update and that they have opened several complaint cases on the same. She said that THERE IS NO FIX AT THIS TIME FOR THE ROUGH IDLE PROBLEM. She gave me a time table for a "fix" in about 45 to 60 days. My '04 MCS picked up this problem after the recall software update in early November, but in the past 2 weeks the issue has not surfaced much at all, but there is still an issue with the software.

The problem is caused by a bug in the new software so until dealers don't get their hands on a new fix, they are basically with their hands tied.

Call MINIUSA and complaint, that's all you can do at the moment.
 

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I also would like to add that the rough idle problem seems to affect only the Cooper S models. I also own a 2002 Cooper CVT which also received the V39 software update and haven't had a single problem with it, be it idle or otherwise.

So if you own a Cooper S and experience the rough idle after the V39 "recall" software, call MINIUSA so they can open up a file with you.

MINIUSA has been very deligent so far in keeping me up-to-date with the situation and I appreciate their customer service and diligence in solving the issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I suppose it's time for me to update, though it might be a bit premature. My 04MCS, Mr. Q, went back to the dealer last Monday. I had a very frustrating go of getting to the bottom of this issue. As I stated I was told by my Service Advisor, Ask Mini and BMW N.A. that they new nothing of this problem and had no other reports of it more times than I care to count. So, it's nice to see CooperS4us actually get an acknowledgment that the problem exists, even if the answer remained there was no fix.

as of 12/27, I was officially one of those cases currently opened with MINI. For me working directly with the hmm still can't remember his title ("BMW Master Technician and Diagnostic Specialist) was the key. I was worn thin dealing with the Service Advisor who kept telling me they'd given my car the "flu" and it was normal for it to show symptoms of what the upgrade was fixing in other models, when there had previously been nothing wrong with my car. Yeah :rolleyes: B.S.

Anyway, while my car was in the shop, the rough idle would not reproduce itself. I was adamant that if they did not find a fix they would reload the old software; something I'd been told could be done at no risk to the car by BMW N.A.. That turned out to not be an option in this case, since this fix involves federal regulations. However, the MTDS knew the problem existed, in his words everyone knows this is a problem. It happens to BMW's. The read it on message boards such as this. This person also happened to have worked on a car that had started to do it as well. In that particular case he said changing to a lower grade fuel resolved the problem.

NJ ended up sending down a tweaked version of the V39 software. What actually was tweaked I don't know, I can only surmise that it was calibration of some sort. I am told to anyone working on the car my software version would appear no different than anyone else’s who has gone through the same upgrade, but the details of the changes can be found in the Mini case file. I left the dealer not sure if I believed what I was being told or not. It's hard to believe something was changed when you can't physically see anything to indicate that.

500+ miles later, my rough idle appears to be gone. In situations where I knew it was happening, it no longer happens. Occasionally I can hear the pitch of the idle change as if it's doing what it was, accommodating some change in the ratios, but the car is not shaking, sputtering and feeling like it is about to stall. Other minor things, that I wasn't sure if they were tied to the upgrade have gone away as well. My gas mileage is within 1 mpg of what it's always been both highway and around town. (Using both the on board computer and good ol calculator, mileage and gas receipt). The slight stumble that was introduced is gone (and that was never an issue of my knowing how to shift and work the clutch properly). The cruise control holds speed (I've never been sure if this was connected, but it's working right now, so who knows).

At the 2-week mark I will be calling the dealer to give this fix the thumbs up or thumbs down. If the rough idle returns, I have two courses of action I am to take, and I am to let the dealer know what I've done and what the results were, so it too can be added to Minis documentation. Right now, it's a preliminary thumbs up on the fix.

Hopefully for everyone else who's had problems introduced to their car this will help pave the way to a fix for you too.
 

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Dealer feedback

I spoke to my service rep at Mini of Universal City today regarding the rough idle. He said that MINI has said that if has affected a "few" cars but mutiplying "few" times the number of cars even here in California ends up being quite a few cars. As was stated earlier, there is currently no fix. He had no time frame for when there would be one either. As the problem -- at least for me -- only occured at 80F and above, I don't expect to see it flare up again during this current SoCal rainy season. If anyone reports a true fix, please post it here.
 

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That's MINI speak for "we have no fix"
 

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As of my last conversation with the service manager last Friday there is still no fix and none on the horizon. There is a V.40 out there but it's for BMW, not MINI. The 2 makes do share some of the same EDU controls and flashes, but not in this case. I guess we'll just have to wait. :mad:
 

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Any more on this topic? I'm scheduled to go in for the recall "fix" on Tuesday, but I'm getting cold feet. I have tried to subscribe to the "do no harm" theory of servicing my MINI, after living with more than six months of stumble as a result of the v36 "upgrade"; if I get v39, will I have to wait for a v43 before my car will run right, again?
 
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