Do you want a BMW X5 but can’t afford one? Well, look no further than the all-new, 2018 BMW X3, a smaller, near carbon-copy of the X5.
Unveiled at BMW’s Plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where it will be produced alongside the BMW X4, BMW X5, and BMW X6, the third-generation X3 doesn’t deviate too far from its predecessors, and that’s not necessary a bad thing. It’s a handsome, even stately-looking, compact SUV that should offend no one.
The front end is bolder than before, featuring sharper headlights that flank larger kidney grilles, while the rear boasts round-looking L-shaped taillights for a more modern look.
The redesigned X3 is 2.2 inches longer, giving it more interior room. Expectedly, occupants are treated to more tech features, including a 75 percent bigger head-up display, a 10.2-inch color screen for the infotainment system that’s compatible with the gesture-recognition technology found in the latest 7 Series, and the ability of owners to talk to their X3 via smartphone / smartwatch apps.
Two powerplants will be available at launch in North America — a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 248 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque and a more performance-oriented, 3.0-liter straight-six rated at 355 hp and 369 lb-ft. All-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission come standard regardless of selected engine.
The new BMW X3 marks the introduction of the first M performance model for the X3 lineup. Powered by the straight-six and equipped with an 8-speed Steptronic Sport automatic transmission with Launch Control, the X3 M40i can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in a quick 4.6 seconds, faster than the notably smaller Volkswagen Golf R.
A gasoline-electric plug-in hybrid model will join the lineup a few months after launch, and could be followed by a full-blown M-tuned X3 and possibly even a diesel model.
With its headlights set squarely on the Audi Q5, the all-new, 2018 BMW X3 goes on sale in November 2017 after making its public debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show. Do you like what BMW did with it?