What could be causing my BMW X3's ABS, DSC and xDrive systems to malfunction?

I have an 80,000-mile BMW E83 2004 X3 3.0i automatic. Recently, the brake warning light came on in conjunction with the warning lights for ABS, DSC/xDrive and the tyre pressure indicator. The 4-wheel drive disengages when these lights are on and only the rear wheels propel the car. After the car has been stopped and the engine turned off for a while, when restarted all these lights come on but go off as soon as the car is driven forward, and I have 4-wheel drive again until the problem reoccurs.

My garage diagnosed that the problem was an ABS sensor, which they replaced. No problems after that for the next 150 or so miles until when, 14 miles into a journey, they all came on again, except this time the tyre pressure warning did not light up. They did not come on again on the return journey or for a number of subsequent journeys of 20 miles or more, then a week later they came on after nine miles. Have you heard of this before and can you offer me any advice?

Asked on 14 December 2013 by JW, Ipswich

Answered by Honest John
This might be due to a disparity in the rolling circumferences of the front and rear tyres which will confuse all the systems you mention into thinking a wheel is slipping because it is rotating faster than the others. This is a common problem on the E83 X3.
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Strong BMW image. Reasonable roadholding for a 4x4. Plenty of safety kit and electronic driver aids.

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