2012 BMW X3 Long Term Road Test

2012 BMW X3: Enjoying The Manual Shifting Mode (With Video)

June 06, 2012

bmw_x3_shifter1.JPG Most automatic transmissions these days come with a manual shift mode. But it's pretty rare for me to use it frequently on anything other than a sport-oriented car. One exception has been our X3, though. I find myself using the shift paddles fairly often. Not because I have to, but because it's just fun to do so. (They're included in the optional Sport Activity package).

Like James wrote recently, they have a nice feel to them and bring about some pretty quick upshifts and rev-matched downshifts. This eight-speed auto might not be a dual-clutch automated gearbox, but it's very enjoyable nonetheless. (It also helps that BMW has revised its throttle response software on its new vehicles to greatly reduce that infamous sluggish throttle tip-in we encountered the past couple years.)

A quick video of clicking through a few upshifts and downshifts follows after the jump.

Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor

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