Preview: the all-new BMW X3Jun 26th, 2017
The BMW X3 was the car that launched the mid-size SAV (Sports Activity Vehicle) segment in 2003. And now the new X3 is set to write the next chapter in this success story with an even more striking, dynamic design language, powerful yet also efficient drive systems and luxurious appointments. Like all members of the successful X family, it blends outstanding driving qualities on any terrain with everyday usability.
The third generation of the BMW X3 follows in its predecessors’ tyre tracks by combining rugged off-road looks with a sporting presence. Its familiar proportions, including very short front and rear overhangs, shine the spotlight on the perfect 50:50 distribution of weight between the front and rear axle. The styling is highlighted by a chunky kidney grille and foglamps featuring a hexagonal design for the first time on a BMW X model. At the rear, the light clusters (whose three-dimensional look in optional full-LED guise give them considerable visual impact), downward-sloping roof spoiler and twin exhaust tailpipes bring matters to a suitably muscular conclusion.
The appearance of the BMW X3 can be adapted precisely to the customer’s personal tastes. In addition to the standard 18-inch wheels, customers can choose sizes up to 21-inch. The interior of the new X3 displays unbeatable fit and finish and material quality, and is even classier and more luxurious than its predecessor. Comfort levels are further elevated by a host of new equipment options like three-zone automatic climate control, the Ambient Air package, active seat ventilation, the cargo function of the standard 40:20:40 split/folding rear seat backrests and the panoramic glass roof that brings extra airiness to the interior and further enhances perceived quality.
Another new equipment item is the optional BMW Display Key, which not only locks and unlocks the BMW X3 by radio remote control, but also shows a variety of status information on the car and serves as the control unit for the optional auxiliary heating, for example.
Optimised dynamic sharpness and ride comfort.
BMW engineers have employed far-reaching chassis modifications to significantly improve the driving dynamics, directional stability and steering feel of the new BMW X3. The car that emerges is even sportier than its predecessor, yet avoids compromising on ride comfort. Chassis options include M Sport suspension, Dynamic Damper Control, M Sport brakes and variable sport steering.
New X3 M40i joins X3 xDrive30i.
The 360-hp BMW X3 M40i gives the X3 range its first M Performance Automobile and is joined by the shape of the X3 xDrive30i producing 252 hp. All the engine variants will team up as standard with an optimised version of the eight-speed Steptronic transmission.
The rigorously applied BMW EfficientDynamics development strategy for the new X3 includes both fuel-economy-optimising powertrains and the extensive application of intelligent lightweight design measures. For example, the increased use of aluminium components in the engine and suspension has reduced the weight of the relevant assemblies. Consequently, the new BMW X3 is up to 55 kilograms lighter than the respective predecessor models in similar specification.
Semi-automated driving and cutting-edge connectivity.
The new BMW X3 can be specified as an option with the latest generation of Active Cruise Control and the Driving Assistant Plus safety package, including Steering and lane control assistant, Lane Change Assistant (est. from December 2017) and Lane Keeping Assistant with side collision protection. This extensive line-up of assistance systems puts clear water between the new BMW X3 and its direct rivals.
The second pillar of BMW ConnectedDrive – alongside the BMW Personal CoPilot driver assistance systems – is formed by BMW ConnectedDrive Services and apps. As a result, the new BMW X3 now also features BMW Connected. Working on the basis of a flexible platform, the Open Mobility Cloud, this new integrated digital concept for enhanced personal mobility uses various touchpoints (such as smartphones and smartwatches) to integrate the car seamlessly into the user’s digital life. This means, for example, that it can transfer mobility-related information, such as addresses from calendar entries, from a smartphone into the car, enter them automatically as destinations into the navigation system and calculate the optimum departure time for the journey.
Gesture control allows various navigation and infotainment system functions to be operated intuitively using finger and hand gestures. Meanwhile, the likewise optional Voice Assistant lets the driver use everyday language to have their requests turned into the appropriate actions instead of having to use set spoken commands. And the optional Head-Up Display enables the most important driving-related information to be projected directly into the driver’s field of vision. The Head-Up Display in the new BMW X3 is unrivalled in its segment for graphics, resolution and display options.