How It Compares - 2012 BMW X3 Long-Term Road Test

2012 BMW X3 Long Term Road Test

2012 BMW X3: How It Compares

February 09, 2012


I remember our 2005 BMW X3 well. It was in the pre-LTRTB era. On a weekend trip I drove it to Santa Barbara and back to Los Angeles with three passengers. The previous X3 had a very -- and I mean VERY -- stiff suspension. As the driver, I enjoyed the stiff ride but rear passengers felt every bump on the road. This new 2012 X3 is not soft by any means, but noticeably less harsh. I also found it easier to climb in and out and it feels roomier.

A lot of you are asking why we got this vehicle, no one could possibly be interested in the X3. Well, since inception the BMW X3 has sold over 600,000 units worldwide, leading this segment. So somebody cares. I know I do. This is exactly the type of vehicle I would consider purchasing. I would cross-shop it with my new crush, the 2013 Acura RDX and my old flame, the Audi A4 wagon.

I pulled out a few specs for comparison between our two long-termers seven years apart.


2012 BMW X3

2005 BMW X3

Width 74.1 in. 73.0 in.
Height 65.4 in. 66.0 in.
Length 183.0 in. 179.7 in.
Wheelbase 110.6 in. 110.1 in.
Curb weight 4,112 lbs. 4,001 lbs.
Front head room 40.7 in. 39.3 in.
Front leg room 39.9 in. 40.2 in.
Front shoulder room 57.3 in. 55.8 in.
Rear head room 39.1 in. 39.4 in.
Rear leg room 36.8 in. 35.8 in.
Rear shoulder room 56.0 in. 55.4 in.

Donna DeRosa, Managing Editor

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