Launched: 2018 BMW X3
BMW introduced the third-generation X3 in India with two variants on offer– Expedition and Luxury
It is no secret that SUVs do well in India and given the way BMWs rivals have been going about it, the new X3 was overdue. And now, of course, it is here to take on the likes of the Q5 and the GLC. Unlike earlier X3s, this brand new one follows the less wonky and more rounded design with a sort of neutral appeal that newer BMWs follow. It is larger than the car it replaces and has been garnished with every BMW trademark design element that exists. The large kidney grille, LED day-time running lamps and the sculpted surfaces that make an appearance on their entire line up.
BMW has decided to launch the new X3 with two variants for now – an entry-level Expedition trim and a better equipped Luxury Line. Both variants are powered by a 2-litre, turbocharged diesel motor that we have become very familiar with. The 188bhp and 400Nm of torque is delivered by an equally familiar 8-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all four wheels via the xDrive system. Combine that with weight saved to the tune of a healthy 55 kilograms and the new X3 20d can hit the 100kph mark from standstill in eight seconds. There are also drive modes to choose from to deliver on the BMW promise of dynamic ability.
Interiors of the new X3 have also been brought up to date with the latest generation of cars with the infotainment system responding to touch inputs apart from the iDrive controls. You also get a host of connectivity features, including Apple CarPlay. However, Android users will have to wait for support to be extended to their devices. BMW has also made wireless charging available along with the display key as well. A rear-view camera with park assist will also come in handy to manoeuvre into tight spaces. Apart from the roomy cabin, you also get 550 litres of boot capacity which can be further extended using the split-folding rear bench.
There are plenty of technologies at work in the new X3 as well. While the xDrive will distribute power optimally between the front and rear axles, adaptive suspension, traction control and automatic differential locks will ensure ability to tackle various situations. You also get the full range of efficient dynamics features and a host of safety features on the X3. There are six airbags, stability control, corner brake control, hill assist and hill descent control to complete an exhaustive list of features available.
With prices for the Expedition variant being announced at Rs 49.99 lakh (ex-showroom, India) and the Luxury Line at Rs 56.70 lakh (ex-showroom, India), BMW is set to take on its German rivals. There will also be a petrol variant to follow later in the year, to complete the lineup. Stay tuned for our first drive report in the coming weeks and let us know which one of its rivals you would like to see it square off against.