libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
Anyone interested in the upcoming BMW X3? It seems like a minature SUV, comparable in size to a Suzuki Vitara or Kia Sportage. It's main competitor would probably be the Land Rover Freelander. Due to its apparent size, I wouldn't consider it.


  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    BMW X3

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  • riri23riri23 Member Posts: 15
    I have seen the spy photos for the new X3 and it looks to me like a tall station wagon (pic. of black model), but the pictures that I think are CG (silver model) look much more attractive and appears more like a small-Ute.

    Anyone saw the concept xActivity vehicle in the North American International Show and got a better sense of what it would look like?Also, any ideas on pricing? Freelander range?

    Any comments appreciated,
  • zspdr94zspdr94 Member Posts: 2
    Hey, I got my first look at the X3 today. BMW has released some teaser material and it looks good. It's a dead ringer for the the xActivity concept except with a roof and all. It's not as tall as the X5, but more of a pumped up wagon as the spy photos show.
  • x3lrvrx3lrvr Member Posts: 2
    I went on the BMW USA website , and they have actual pictures of the x3 (European Version ) but it looks great . I currently own a Nissan Pathfinder (2001) and I do believe that Nissan makes a good product , but look out when you are trying to get something fixed , I have been to several dealerships , and i will never buy another Nissan (UNskilled Mechanics everywhere). I bought a 2001 BMW 325 for my wife and i have had no problems . My next SAV will be either an x3 or an x5 .
  • raychuang00raychuang00 Member Posts: 541
    I'm not impressed with the design of the new X3.

    It reminds me too much of small SUV that was designed for Hyundai or Kia.

    At the rate Bangle is going I'm NOT looking forward to the next-generation 3-series and 1-series cars due in a couple of years.
  • kennrskennrs Member Posts: 7
    There are a lot of official X3 photos at:

    I had thought the X3 was going to have iDrive, but there's no evidence of it in the photos. There's no fixed screen for it, only a pop-up navigation screen, which doesn't appear in all the photos. The switchgear layout looks about the same as in the current 3-series (although a display is missing from the audio unit). Hope this turns out to be the case.
  • riri23riri23 Member Posts: 15
    Some people will like it, others will not; so far I like what I see. Just want to know the pricing for US?

  • doctdoct Member Posts: 20
    in the mail read "psst..want to see the new X3?

    it had one of those old style novelties where you look in a little telescope to see a picture of a pretty girl in Atlantic City when you hold it to a light, but it had a X3 photo. good job BMW!! it also had a mail in card for more info and some marketing questions

    looking forward to this vehicle, currently drive 1996 328cic in summer and ford ranger in winter and moving toward only one auto.

    any other new info?
  • shoafilatorshoafilator Member Posts: 1
    Though I'm not one to drool over SUVs, the x3, quite probably, will become my favorite SUV. An x3 3.0 with a 6 speed would be not only more fun to drive, but also more utilitarian than the other vehicles in its class. If it continues in the ruggedness of the x5, it will be a much better performer off road than the Ford Escape/Mazda Tribute(the only REAL off-roading small SUV). Also, as long as the body lean isn't awful, this'll be great to take on those country back roads. God, I hope it has that sweet Bimmer exhaust note. If the price is right, and it's safe, it'll be my #1.
  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    It's like the first subcompact SUV. I may have to start callling it a wagon, it's so small.
  • wsag26wsag26 Member Posts: 124
    There is no comparison between a BMW X3 and Land Rover Freelander. I know, and I bet you know that any BMW (especially if it was out for a reasonable price) would sell better than a Land Rover, even the X5 vs Range Rover. BMW is bringing out entry level sport coupes, compact sedans, and compact SUV's (like the X3) Love it or hate it design like other BMW's coming out at the moment (excluding 2004 BMW 5 and 2005 M5) like the 6 Series picture Edmunds has recently released to the public. I will update if I get anymore information.
  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    So what? They would still be in the same size and price range.
  • theo2709theo2709 Member Posts: 476
    I have to agree with libertycat on this one, that the X3 is small, and is basically a 3-series wagon with bigger shocks. Also, what is going on with the styling over there in Bavaria? To me, at least, the X3 looks rather dull, not as good-looking as the 3 sedan. Was Bangle in charge of this one? If he was, he must have been under a tighter chain ;). But the X3 will probably sell very well anyway, and I agree that it does have better off-road ability than other mini-SUVs on the market. And it will obviously be a blast to drive.
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    thank GOD their is no iDrive.

    Time for Bangle to go.
  • nobeenobee Member Posts: 194
    Maybe a bit early but has anyone started comparing the X3 to any other models? I know I have...My quest for another vehicle ended with the XC70; however, I'm having second thoughts since the introduction of the X3..To me, the X3 just seems like that perfect niche vehicle that fits perfectly for my needs. Being married and with a baby on the way, I need a vehicle that's capable of hauling baby gear, groceries, golf clubs and at the same time being able to keep my head up amongst the beer-drinking, gun-totin' friends...In short, the X3 looks masculine enough for me to keep my "man card".
    Also, the initial pic of the interior looks outstanding! Cockpit looks very streamlined and professional. Wonder if it'll come with dual climate control? Can't wait 'til Sept!

  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    It is a great wagon. Volvo dealerships are a fun place to be and the XC70 has great styling, lots of room, and a pretty interior. However, you might as well get the lower priced V70 unless you like the XC70's body cladding. Believe me, the X3 will probably be too small for you. The X5 is compact, this is going to be subcompact. Smaller than a CR-V, Freelander, Rav4, Liberty, Escape, etc.
  • nobeenobee Member Posts: 194
    6 page review on the X3.,view,BMW.spy?artid=1- - - 3533&pg=1
    Author anticipates the price range to be between $43,000-$65,000 CAD. Roughly equates to $32,100-$48500 USD.

    Libertycat, V70 is a pretty good deal; however, the XC70 exterior and interior is really pleasing to my eye...Love the baseball glove-like leather stitching on the upholstery! Kind of reminds me of the Audi TT's leather stitching. I'm going to wait until the interior specs come out before I make any decisions. Hopefully, the cubic feet in the X3 will be similiar to the XC70.

  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    Funny, I WAY prefer the V70 exterior (body cladding isn't for me) and interiors seem to be the same. I mean same passenger and cargo room exactly, same colors and trims, etc. Would you get one with the wood trim? I sure would. I LOVE wood. Another reason the X3 isn't for me. Also, the X3 seems overpriced. Oh and thanks for the review, nobee!
  • vsromanvsroman Member Posts: 95
    I'm very partial to BMWs, currently with a 99' 528i Sport Package. However, I have recently caught myself drooling over the Infiniti FX35. Test drove it yesterday and loved it. Does anyone have any feeling on how this SUV will compare with the X3. I have read that the X3 will compete against the Freelander, Jeep Liberty, etc. but never see the FX35 mentioned.

    Seems to me they are after the same market...offering a great combination of sporty looks, luxury, performance, AWD, and some utility.

    The price I got on the FX35 with Sport Package was $38,500, which seems in the estimated ballpark for a nicely equipped X3.

    Your thoughts...
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 207,699
    A well equipped 325ix is about $38K. I can't imagine the X3 coming in cheaper than that. I think most of the ones you will see on the dealers lot will be $40K, and add $3-5K more for the 3.0 litre engine. I don't know what class that puts them in, but its way above any other similar sized crossover ute. Of course, that makes it just like BMW's other models.


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  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    You have hit the nail on the head. They are PERFECT competitors. They both are VERY small SUVs. The FX is smaller than all of its current competitors.
  • miamicrv1miamicrv1 Member Posts: 66
    I think the dimensions are almost identical to the CRV. I for one find that a plus since the defacto standard of 188 inches more or less is 10 more than I need.

    But more importantly. BMW is not building the vehicle. It's being built by a firm in Austria. Frankly, I'd never buy anything made by BMW's South Carolina facilty. So this may be a plus to. Any opinions on likely build quality and reliability issues.
  • vsromanvsroman Member Posts: 95
    Trevor Hofmann, the reviewer on who wrote the X3 article emailed me to say that the FX35/45 are much more comparable to the X5. He says that the overall size and weight are closer to the X5. He had interesting thoughts on performance..."the FX35 would obliterate both the X3 and X5 3.0 in acceleration tests." Another interesting quote..."there isn't an SUV made that can match the FX in the corners, Porsche Cayenne included." This comes from a guy who LOVES the X3 and X5.

    For me, it just seems that the X3's price will not match the size and performance of the FX35. A well-equipped FX35 for 38K and the comparable X3 3.0 for 45K...I don't think so...

    For those of you who have not looked at the FX35, you must see if first hand...the pictures do not do it justice.
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    x3-nice interior

    however the x5 has no cargo space, i can't see the x3 having that either.
  • nobeenobee Member Posts: 194
    Libertycat, I agree, the bodycladding on the XC70 is just okay, but having sat in both the V70 and the XC70, I just felt a bit more comfortable in the XC.

    Anyway, even though I'm excited about the X3's debut I'm a bit gunshy about purchasing a first yr model..Take the X5 for example. Seems like a lot of buyers had some growing pains with the 1st yr model. I guess time will tell...lets hope for the best!

  • libertycatlibertycat Member Posts: 593
    The Honda CR-V is a mini or compact SUV.
  • ariellearielle Member Posts: 9
    Any bets as to how the X3 will fare on fuel economy? Will the 2.5liter engine do better than 21 mpg on the highway? When will this model reach dealers?
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    I sure hope that it doesn't cost me $40K. I think that the 2.5i version should start at about $32K. I've seen 325Xi Sport Wagons well equipped for about $36,500, so that's how much the X3 should be, maybe a thousand more for the special shocks.
    Thank GOD there's no iDrive.
  • x3lrvrx3lrvr Member Posts: 2
    I think the price will be a huge determining factor to see wether or not the X3 will sink or swim . Although it is a BMW, it will be compared with the vehicles in the same class, and if you are a BMW nut as I am, I would be more one sided to the X3 more than anything , but if BMW would like to get a piece of this market to the average consumer , they need to make it affordable .
  • partyboye1partyboye1 Member Posts: 16
    Did anyone notice the uncanny resemblance of the x3's ergonomics and the nissan sentra's? If you didn't, look at pictures of both and right back.
  • ariellearielle Member Posts: 9
    The height of the X3 is 66". Does anyone know what the ground clearance will be? Does it sound as if it will provide a high enough vantage point?
  • splurgersplurger Member Posts: 5
    I think that 167.4 cm translates to more than 71" doesn't it? Taking my trusty ruler to the picture on the following link, I got about 12" which is of course ridiculous.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    I hope that it won't cost $38K even. At that price- just run to the Acura dealer and buy an MDX. BMW will sell some, for those who like premium compact. I'm one of those people who like premium compact, but if it's going to cost me $38K, why should I buy it?
  • ruckballruckball Member Posts: 2
    I'm interested in whether anyone cares that BMW is having the X3 made in Austria by Magna, the company that also makes Saab convertibles and the Jeep Grand Cherokee for Europe. The X3 design was done by BMW, but it will be the first BMW that won't be made in a BMW plant.

    I'm a reporter at a major newspaper. Write me at [email protected] -- happy to swaps IDs once we connect.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Member Posts: 5,751
    It's going to be very easy to tell. When these vehicles are produced the plant code will be on them. There is a list of plant codes for BMW manufacturing facilities.
  • bmwgurubmwguru Member Posts: 51
    It's more accurate to say it is the first mass produced BMW not built in a BMW plant. The M1 was made for BMW by Italdesign.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    looks fairly handsome in the blue color. No iDrive. This may be the last BMW without iDrive. (sources say the next 3-Series will have a decontented version of iDrive) (The 1-Series isn't expected to have iDrive, so that may be the last before BMW goes iDrive crazy in every car they make and they'll screw up. Look at the 7-Series)
  • mkarpmkarp Member Posts: 22
    I have heard the x3 will be available "early" in 04, does anyone know what that means? January? or April? or later?
    Is it me or does some of the photo's resemble the forester a little?
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    should be on showroom floors by March at the latest. Some will pop up Feb or Jan. It does look like a raised Forester.
  • veduciveduci Member Posts: 3
    Has anyone been able to locate specifications for the interior of the X3? Legroom; rear cargo cu.ft. with seats folded down etc.?
  • michanthmichanth Member Posts: 38
    I live in LA and as I was driving westward on Santa Monica Blvd to the 405 freeway, I followed a BMW X3 prototype. In fact as we were waiting at a traffic light, along came a X5 to compare them both. So the X3 next to the X5 at traffic Light, the X3 looked nearly as wide and not as tall as the X5. As time went on to the next traffic light, I pulled along side of the X3 and shouted to the driver, nice real nice. We talked shortly, he said it was a prototype X3 with a 3 liter engine, I asked if they needed more drivers. He was having a lot fun driving the X3. Final impression, the X3 looked larger than a CRV-RAV4 I did not see the front of the car, I was always trailing the vehicle, but it was very good looking, not too tall, or too station wagon looking but sporty. Great start for BMW X3
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    not bad. I may be in the market for a good used one in a few years.
  • mkarpmkarp Member Posts: 22
    michanth, while comparing the x5 to the x3 were you able to notice if the storage area behind the back seat was larger in the x3 or the x5. The x5 seems to be very small and I am hoping the x3 has a little more room. I need the room for my husky, she would not be comfortable in the back of the x5, besides the extra $ for the 5...thanks
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    I think that it will be Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 size, if not just a little larger.
  • michanthmichanth Member Posts: 38
    "michanth, while comparing the x5 to the x3 were you able to notice if the storage area behind the back seat was larger in the x3 or the x5." from message 46..................

    MKARP, I did not notice the back seat room, although by memory it looked ample, but until the official dimensions are released we will never really know.
  • jchan2jchan2 Member Posts: 4,956
    should be smaller than the X5. Otherwise, why buy the X5?
  • riri23riri23 Member Posts: 15
    "should be smaller than the X5. Otherwise, why buy the X5?"

    Not necesarilly, the 3 series wagon has more cargo/luggage space than the X5 and the X3 is on a 3 series platform. In fact, I believe they will no longer make/bring the 3 series wagon to the U.S. now that the x3 is in the mix.
  • HSYHSY Member Posts: 2
    Here are numbers quoted from BMW CAR Magazine (Aug'03 issue):

    Dimension X3 X5 Difference
    Length 4565mm 4667mm 102mm (4.0in)
    Width ** 1853mm 1872mm 19mm (0.75in)
    Height 1674mm 1715mm 41mm (1.6in)
    ** excluding mirrors

    Luggage 480-1560 L --
    capacity (17-55 cu ft) (16.1-54 cu ft)

    "The 3.0 X3 will accelerate from 0-62mph in 7.8 seconds (nearly a second quicker than the similarly equiped X5) on its way to a maximum of 130mph for the standard car, or 139mph for the Sport model."
  • bmwsellerbmwseller Member Posts: 200
    BMW simulcast says X3's will be arriving at centers day after thanksgiving. I'll be at the ride and drive in Irvine mid-november. We've already taken deposits on these. It will be interesting to see how many customers BMW will take from lexus. That's turned into there bread and butter sales leader.

    Thanks, for the information on where these will be built. I'm a little alarmed at that. I'll investigate.
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