Last post on Jun 19, 2013 at 3:41 PM
You are in the BMW X3 & X5
What is this discussion about?
BMW X3, SUV
#815 of 4187 X3 Sport Package ride quality mjmx3
Feb 15, 2004 (2:24 pm)
mjmx3 - I reported earlier that I like the sport package handling and ride. Now we have a week and 350 miles on the X3 with the sport package, but not the upgraded performance wheel/tire package. The car came with 235/50/18H all season Pirelli Scorpion STRs. I got scared away from the performance tire upgrade by the nasty comments on this board as well as the Car and Driver review. To help calibrate my opinion though, we are both in our 50s, our trade was an E36 M3, our other car is an 2001 E39 M5 and we both dislike automatic transmissions, so we fit a pretty small demographic.
I find the X3 ride very tight, firm and well controlled for a truck. I prefer the ride of the M5, not a fair comparison in my mind, but my wife actually said today she likes being a passenger in the X3 more than the M5. That could be because I can't seem to get to the same speeds as quickly in the X3, but it was an honest comment from her.
The X3 comes as close to the performance that I desire as I have been able to find in a truck, the X5 and Infinitis being next on my list. I thought the RX330 that people keep bringing up on this board was a beautiful car that I would have considered for the styling and toys even though the performance is not what I wanted, but I couldn't consider it due to the fact that I could not find a comfortable driving position for my 6'4" frame. The center console interferes with my right leg.
So I guess my advice on the sport package is that you should not back away from it if you like performance suspensions and you want what must be one of the most nimble SUVs on the market.
And, by the way, this is still a very clean car - either my good luck for once, or a tribute to the quality control on this new product. BMW fixed a lot of the issues I had with the early production models they had for test drives last fall.
We're very happy with the X3 3.0, the sport package and the 6-speed. I would order the same car if I had to do it over today.
#816 of 4187 Cargo space and depreciation on X3
Feb 15, 2004 (7:09 pm)
Any concerns on the limited cargo space in the X3? Can I at least put two golf bags without folding the rear seats.
Would the X3 hold its value after say 5 years like the other BMWs? I am a bit skeptical about the resale value.
#818 of 4187 Re. Finally test drove the X3
Feb 16, 2004 (10:05 am)
It sometimes amazes me how differently 2 people can judge the same car. My experience was quite the opposite of yours. I have been in my 3 series for nine years now, and have driven the XI as a dealer loaner several times.
First of all, I don’t consider a direct comparison between these as really a valid test as one is a station wagon or car and the other a SUV. A more fair comparison would be SUV vs. SUV. If I were in the market for another sedan or a station wagon, the 330XI would be at the top of my list. I was however in the market for a SUV, so I judged the X3 vs. other SUVs in its class.
When I tested the X3 I was amazed how well it handled, with great road feel and maneuverability. I thought it was the closest thing I had ever driven to a 3 series sedan in an SUV. I have tested many SUVs and none were even close to the X3 in road feel, and handling. I found the ride to be a bit different due to the increased ride height, but by no means did it feel overly harsh or uncomfortable. As far as getting car sick, I was probably too busy grinning to notice. I found that the interior was of good quality, but not opulent. The interior seemed a bit different, but on a par with my 325I. The seats were comfortable and the driver position was good. There are SUVs with nicer looking interiors, but for me it was an acceptable trade off of the X3 handling vs. the “luxury” of the Lexus 330.
I’m not suggesting your opinion is wrong, or mine is correct. For any prospective buyers reading this, I would take the “reviews” with a grain of salt, and advise that instead of relying on the opinions of drivers with conflicting views, that you go out and test one for yourself. There are a lot of good choices out there.
#819 of 4187 Worth it?
Feb 16, 2004 (5:17 pm)
I remember reading an article about the X3 a few weeks ago. The general tone was that it is so expensive with options that you can get an X5 for just a little more, so "why bother"?
Do you agree with this>
Feb 16, 2004 (7:24 pm)
The only way to get an X3 into X5 pricing realm is to load it up. The X5 near the X3 pricing is so stripped, it loses alot of the luxuries. I don't think they are the same buyer. Remember you can get into a stripped X3 for just over 30,000.00. Not bad for a car with Xdrive and roadhandling of a BMW. So I guess I'd have to disagree with that statement.
#821 of 4187 X3 Sport Package ride quality
Feb 16, 2004 (7:41 pm)
m5x3: Thank you for taking the time to provide a background on your personal profile and your assessment of your new X3 3.0i with the Sport Package (SP). I ordered the SP on my X3 3.0i with the same wheel and tire package you did so your “real world” user comments and ride assessments are reassuring.
Hopefully the Pirelli Scorpion STRs are part of the better ride scenario. I live in the Northeast and therefore I needed an all-weather tire so the higher speed rated tire and wheel package was not for me. I definitely needed a “best of both worlds” option.
I am not familiar with the Pirelli Scorpion STRs. Does anyone have any experience with them?
#822 of 4187 Worth it?
Feb 16, 2004 (8:06 pm)
First, the price of an X3 and X5 is considerable different. Just price them! Drive an X3 3.0 and an X5 3.0 and you will feel a significant difference.
If you want a used (1-3 years) x5 you can purchase one for almost the same price as an new x3.(But remember you won't get the Xdrive for another 1-3 years.) The X5 certainly has more lux interior and exterior design. If you are planning to keep your vehicle only a few years before trade and like a more refined ride, you should strongly consider a used x5. However if you desire a new car, enjoy an aggressive drive, want added interior space, are concerned about gas mileage, you should take a look at the x3.
To be honest, I have just purchased an X3. I considered a used X5. But I like new. We were planning a trip to Europe this summer and the difference between the ED price for an X3 and US X5 was also a consideration. I liked the fun factor in driving a X3 vs X5. I personally like the spartan interior of the X3 and I like the gas mileage difference.
I have been looking for a replacement for my 87 Pathfinder. The X3 is the first vehicle that has made me go through the dealer purchasing process.
Good luck on your decision.
#823 of 4187 Worth it?
Feb 17, 2004 (10:02 am)
One more comparison that I've already brought to this board before. I was very close to the purchase of a new X5 before I decided to wait for the X3 we're now driving. I saved more than $14,000.
Most comparisons you see match the 3.0 versions of both vehicles. But I wanted the V8 acceleration in the heavier X5, and actually preferring the 6-speed, I have the X3 combo that is within a second of the X5 V8, 0 to 60, but about that much quicker than the X5 six. I loaded the X3 up with PDC, audio upgrade, nav, tinted windows, lux and sport packages, heated seats, etc. There wasn't anything meaningful (in my mind) that I could get on the X5 that I didn't get on this car. In the end, I would have had in the X5 an automatic transmission and V8 in an admittedly more luxurious package, but the seats would have been no more comfortable, the audio may not be as good, there would be no more space, and the X5 is heavier and less agile.
Sorry if this sounds like an odd comparison, but at least to me it is fairer than comparing the small engine X5 with the large engine X3. The X5 and X3 are two fine vehicles targeted at slightly different buyers. If you want an X5, buy it and feel good about it - I certainly prefer it to its V8 rivals from other manufacturers. But don't deny yourself an X3 because you think it is too expensive when compared to its big brother.
#824 of 4187 X3 Ride Quality
Feb 17, 2004 (1:53 pm)
m5x3: I reported earlier that I like the sport package handling and ride.
Thanks for sharing your ride experience. I am still interested at X3 although there are several not so good reports about the stiff ride and cheap materials inside, particularly the article from Car & Driver. I wonder did you drive the non-sports package to compare with the sports package you are driving? I am seriously making a decision to buy the X3 or the TL in the next month or so. The stiff ride is something I am concerned about. Do you consider X3 stiff but supple?