Driving along a back country road and slump. The transmission felt like it dropped out the bottom. It left me stranded since when I turned it back on it refused to recognize reverse, drive, any gear whatsoever. Since then I have had a "software update" and it is still extremely sluggish in first gear and before I know it I am in third at a snail pace. Highway driving is excellent but in traffic a nightmare, and unreliable shifting. I was told this is a worldwide problem by my dealer regarding X3 transmissions and although this is happening to several X3's it is not large enough to recall. There needs to be a recall. Lurching and shifting so hard that it bucks is not acceptable for a BMW.
It is a comfortable cabin, nice looking and easy to maneuver in rush hour traffic. Road noise is super quiet.
A recall needs to be issued for the "computer" operating the X3 transmission. It is dangerous and unreliable. New parking sensor technology. I need to replace all eight of mine within the first year of ownership.
Although this is typically a car for women, I'm a 30 year old man, and I love this car. I needed to purchase an SUV and love how the X3 drives like a sedan, but is great in the snow and on wet surfaces. I enjoy the tight steering and quickness. It's much more agile than any SUV I've ever driven.
Speed, acceleration, and handling make this an awesome SUV choice. The sound system is awesome, and having controls on wheel is convenient to use.
This is our 3rd X3, and I loved the other two, both 2005s. This seems to be a different vehicle. Same great finish and handling, but awful acceleration. As written elsewhere, it is bothersome and dangerous. I loved the responsive, fun to drive qualities of our other X3s. This one makes me scared to enter the highway. Not so fun. Once you get past 40, it is fine, but getting there can be tough. Sometimes you punch it and boom, other times you count to three before anything happens. Someone is going to get into an accident because of this. We went to the dealer and they tried a software fix, but it only made it marginally better and we seem to have lost 1-2 MPG. Disappointing.
Interior, handling, safety, decent mileage, service at dealership. Fun, fun, fun to drive.
Navigation (awful), Transmission (awful) bluetooth (so-so)
There is a lot of complaining about the automatic transmission version of this machine. I bought an x3 manual with 6000 miles on it in February 2008 and have put 8000 miles on it since then. This is a great vehicle if you like driving. Fantastic low-end torque. Great acceleration in 2nd, 3rd and 4th. 5th and 6 are highway overdrives. Corners flat in aggressive driving. Have never had better brakes. Pulls a utility trailer loaded with stuff for the dump like its not there. I was skeptical about BMW reliability. No issues so far and the 100,000 mile warranty should have me covered. It doesn't have all the cup holders and storage that a Japanese vehicle has... drives much better though.
The engine! This thing wants to be revved and driven. Handling is great. AWD is better in Vermont winters than a 2003 Land Cruiser and 2006 Honda Ridgeline, both sold. Performs great in all weather conditions. Passes cars on highway like they are standing still, like a four cylinder liter bike.
If the X3 got 30 miles per gallon I would never want another car. I'm getting 18-19 overall, flogging it. 6 cd changer should be standard equipment. Overall, best vehicle I have ever had so far. All the pluses outweigh the so so gas mileage, even at $4.50/gallon.
I finally had enough. Took a major loss by trading in the 2007 X3. Bought the car for 43K and got 29K in trade in ! The transmission problem in my opinion is dangerous and makes the car unpredictable in many situations (turns, acceleration from stop). Although I brought it back to the dealer for the fix, the problem persisted. In my opinion, it is a disgrace that BMW has the audacity to label this thing the "ultimate driving machine". I have been permanently soured by the BMW brand. Goodbye !
Exterior looks and design.
Electronics: below industry standard. Transmission: well below industry standard.
† Edmunds.com received the highest numerical score in the proprietary J.D. Power 2014 Third-Party Automotive Website Evaluation Study℠. Results based on responses from 3,381 responses, measuring 14 companies and measures third-party automotive website usefulness among new and used vehicle shoppers. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of owners surveyed from January 2014. Your experiences may vary. Visit jdpower.com.