2012 BMW X3 Long Term Road Test

2012 BMW X3 xDrive35i versus the xDrive28i

October 26, 2012

Blue 28i.JPG

On Monday, I described our long-term X3 xDrive35i as uniquely quick for its class. Yesterday I drove the xDrive28i with its turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes as much power, but more torque than the outgoing naturally aspirated straight-6.

As it turns out, the 28i is ununiquely average for the segment. And that's just fine, because a sub-6-second 0-60 time is still plenty quick. If BMW didn't insist on all-wheel-drive, a hypothetical sDrive28i would be even quicker.

In practice, the 28i really is all the engine you'd ever need in the X3. Torque is immediate and plentiful, and it actually sounds pretty good. Well, at least from the inside. From the outside, especially at idle, it definitely sounds four-cylindery.

So, would you pay extra for the 35i?

James Riswick, Automotive Editor

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