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XBimmers | BMW X3 Forum > BMW X3 Forums | F25 (2011 - Current) > Second Generation BMW X3 General Forum » New X3 (F25) Preview Day - First Thoughts

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      10-26-2010, 02:38 AM   #1
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New X3 (F25) Preview Day - First Thoughts

Firstly - no test drives. This was a pre-production model to UK spec in a screened area in the showroom. Official launch is not until 20th Nov.
I imagine the car is being shifted from dealer to dealer to guage interest and from the scruffy prep 'chit' left inside the dealers don't really care. No pictures as there's been so many published there's no point.

Walking in.....

A good looking car. Ultimately, no real step forwards from a design perspective and like the new 5 it's evolution not revolution. Having seen the last generations going through the Bangle effect some would say it's boring.

Walking round, it's bigger, but not much from the outside. Inside however is different - the passenger compartment just feels better. The proportions are different but it's difficult to tell whether it's lower sills which make it feel easier to get into (no side steps). The driving position was easily adjusted to suit me and then getting in behind my seat settings showed the increase in rear seat space. I'm 6' 2" and it was a good size in the back. The boot is noticeably bigger and in the right way. Wider and longer it's obvious to see as soon as you open the hatch.

That's really where the intial smiles finished. The feel in anything but the front seats is that of disappointment. Sitting in the back the middle armrest is just a lump of leather - gone is the storage, gone are the cupholders. The power socket has gone too and the black plastic seat backs just look wrong (beige leather trim). When you get to the boot the feeling of cost cutting continues - the old boot floor is substantial and feels like it would take some weight. The new one is pressed cardboard and feels flimsy - the first load of rubble going to the tip will need to be picked out of the underfloor storage as the floor would collapse.

Conclusion

Would I buy one - yes It's a more modern looking car with more space and the driving seat feel is good. Standard leather means the quality is there from the start and in comparison with the plastic pseudo-leather trim in the ML it's a quality motor car. Without a driving experience I can't really judge.

I do think however that the way BMW has delayed the 3.0d launch until 2011 Q2 is short sighted. VW have just launched the Touareg, which is a step up on the model ladder - VW have managed the launch far far better - forum members were given the chance to drive it back in July and it's good, very good. For an extra couple of k the whole car is a step up and the pre-launch lease deals were just stunning - 360 +VAT on a 3+23 deal....... you'd be paying at least another 150 per month for an X3 and that's for a 2.0d not a 3.0d....

So listen up BMW - my purchasing decision at the moment is made through brand loyalty. Hearing the salesman in the showroom telling me that even if I ordered on the spot it would be a March delivery....... JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!!!!!!

I want (notice use of the word want and not need ) a new X3, but I want a 3.0d. As that won't be a realistic proposition for at least another 8 months, probably a year as all 3.0d production is going to Germany. I'm now watching Touareg prices..... as well as D4 prices and Cayenne diesel prices.......
I'm sorry to say that BMW are slipping, the bean counters have kept them afloat through the difficult year we've just seen but, even though I want one my gut feel is that they're not there with the quality of this car. If the right deal comes up on one of the other mentioned I'll be gone and I think others may do the same.
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      10-26-2010, 03:22 PM   #2
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I just came back from driving the new X3 at BMW Performance Center in Spartanburg, SC. All I can say is wow. The new design is incredible. I had the opportunity to drive it back to back against the Q5, GLX and RX under various conditions and it was the clear winner. The difference in feel, handling, braking and especially acceleration is startling. It is absolutely the top of its class and anyone who is interested will be thrilled once they have the opportunity to drive it. A real home run for BMW.
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      10-26-2010, 06:23 PM   #3
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I'm assuming it was the X3 35i.
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