The copy of earlier insurance policy effectively owns the car until the designated proprietor or driver of the vehicle. There is an app for Apple and the.

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Once the X5, BMW's SUV breakthrough model had blazed a trail across our 4WD landscape it was to be expected that the company would follow it up with a more compact model. The X3 slotted in below the X5 in much the same way the 3-Series fitted into the passenger car range underneath the 5-Series. Final drive was full-time four-wheel drive with BMW's xDrive system to maintain grip in slippery going. Underneath the suspension was independent all round, the brakes were discs with ABS, the alloy wheels were wrapped in all-round rubber, and the spare was only a space-saver. Inside the X3 had all you could desire with the list of standard features including automatic air-conditioning, cruise, remote central locking, leather trim, multi-function steering wheel, power mirrors and windows and CD sound. Look for an independent specialist to have the servicing done, as dealers tend to be very expensive.
Servicing is critical so make sure any prospective purchase has had the required maintenance. With a comprehensive array of active and passive safety features the X3 was given 4 stars out of a possible five by ANCAP. Active features include ABS braking, traction control, electronic stability control and hill descent control, while passive safety is well covered by a combination of dual front airbags, head and side airbags.
LEXUS RX330 - 2004-2005 - Lexus quality in a very refined, well-equipped premium five-seater SUV package, but is much more at home on the black top than the range where 4WD system can be found wanting. HONDA MD-X - 2004-2006 - Honda's prestige SUV offering delivers quality build, refinement and seven-seater practicality, but lacks real off-road ability and a little in on-road performance.
JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE - 2004-2006 - Mercedes influence lifted Jeep's game with better engines, gearboxes, suspension, and drive systems.
Note that BMW would like us to call its vehicles SAVs, standing for Sports Activity Vehicle, but no-one seems particularly interested in that acronym so we will stick with SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle).
The midsize BMW X3 is the subject of this week’s article as it’s proving very popular in recent times. In Australia around one third of all BMW sales are in SUVs. If you’re looking for a family car the gen-two BMW X3 has ample legroom for those in the rear seat and three children will find they have good shoulder room. Boot space is good and the luggage areas are well shaped and easy to load in all X3 models. As there’s almost no demand for a BMW that can go off road, the suspension guys have gone for handling and comfort ahead of traction on unsealed surfaces. Though the diesels are the more economical we do have a preference for turbo-petrol engines as they just love to rev way up in the scale, whereas the diesels give up in the high 4000s. Even better are the naturally aspirated straights sixes - one of our all time favourite powerplants.
Six-speed manual gearboxes were offered in the early days, but were never popular and disappeared from the new-car price list during 2008. Automatic transmissions began with five forward speeds in 2004, this increased to six in 2006, then eight in the all-new model of 2011. The BMW X3 is generally trouble free, but it makes sense to buy a used one with a full service history.



The use of incorrect tyres can cause problems with the transfer case due to incorrect rolling radii. While the latter is preferable for its greater torque, not as much is between them as you would think.
Porsche has captured the very essence of motoring with its back-to-basics limited edition machine. While it had the BMW corporate look the tough chunky look that made the X5 attractive was lost, the X3 looked wimpy by comparison. The build quality is high, and they certainly look the goods sitting in the showroom, but history suggests that cars with the blue-and-white spinner badge can become expensive as the kays climb. BMW recommended 98-octane premium unleaded for the petrol models, but have approved E10 ethanol blend for the X3. He likes the easy of entry with the high driving position, the cornering and driver control, the torque at low speed, the size of the cabin, and the look. The reduction in size was caused by the realisation by car makers that most SUV buyers aren’t interested in exploring the wilds of their respective countries, rather they want a capacious station wagon with a driving position that’s higher than cars’. The biggest seller is the X5, but the X3, introduced here in July 2004, is holding its own in the sales race.
Clever electronics, further enhanced on the gen-two X3, do give it more grip in harsh going than you might expect. BMW has long been a specialist in turbocharged engines and both the petrol and diesel units work well.
If you’re keen on DIY gearshifting you may find a few manuals have been privately imported. There are manual overrides that give you a fair bit of control as BMW has long been an expert in sporting automatics. The concentration is on major metro areas but there are quite a few in country cities and even large country towns. Spare parts are relatively expensive, but no more so than others in this class of SUV. These are complex cars with a multitude of electronic items and should be left to BMW dealers.
The car will have been in contact by way of the internet with the technical departments in the German head office each time it was serviced at an official dealership. Make a note of the details of tyres then contact BMW for a list of recommended tyres. If you suspect one has been off the beaten track - a rare event - examine the bumper corners, doors sills and undertray for damage - or choose an X3 that hasn’t beaten about the bush.
Slow starting can indicate real problems. An inspection of the interior, including the luggage area will reveal that a car has been used as a workhorse for carting kids or other heavy-duty stuff. If you choose to get into one it's best to do it when the kays are low and get out again before the bills start to roll in.
Bought from a dealer parts are expensive, but relief can be found with the independents who are able to source much cheaper parts that still do the job.


So far, he has had no problems with his pride and joy.Dr Neil Cranston has owned his X3 for two years, and says it the best car he has driven or owned in 40 years of motoring. Interestingly, the second generation X3, sold from March 2011, is significantly larger than the original and is within a few centimetres of the first-generation X5 in many dimensions. There’s the usual lag before things start to really motor well, but once the engines are past that stage they are beautifully responsive.
We seldom here any real complaints about availability. Similarly, insurance costs aren’t low, but you generally seem to get value for money.
There are some ex-BMW mechanics in private practise and owners speak very highly of them, however, they may not have access to the very latest information or changes to the X3. Yes, but too few buyers take this into account when falling in love with a potential new car.
It was also a fair bit lighter but still tipped the scales at between 1700 to 1800 kilograms, which hardly made it a lightweight.In its original form the X3 was available with a choice of two in-line six-cylinder engines. He particularly praises the X3’s quality, safely and comfort.John has done 40,000km in his 2012 20d and prefers its size compared to the X5 and X1. In the X3, these are on the floor of the luggage compartment, which means any luggage has to fit around the straps.The tailgate was a single-piece unit and needed a bit of space behind the car to open, while the rear window was sharply angled, reducing rear vision.
In vehicles like these, that is another potential safety negative.The interior was a bit of a let-down, too. It’s only done 111,000km and there has been a succession of expensive problems with it, including transmission woes, radiator leaks, air-conditioning leaks, windscreen washer pump failures, and a turbocharger failure.NEWWith the runaway success of the X5 it was only a matter of time before BMW unleashed a smaller version. If the damage is present, look elsewhere.Make sure any X3 riding on non-original tyres is fitted with something with the appropriate speed rating for the vehicle.
Many owners may replace tyres with a set that doesn't give the same performance parameters and the X3's otherwise good handling could suffer for it.On any car you're looking at, make sure all the electrical gear works. A BMW with high kays showing on the odometer should be approached with caution, and with an average of 80,000km - 150,000km 2008 X3s fall into that category.
The last of the E83s, from 2011, are a better choice if you can stump up the readies needed to buy one.Apart from a problem with the transfer gearbox in the four-wheel drive system, the major mechanical components are generally robust and reliable. To add insult to injury you can’t buy the individual parts to repair it, as BMW will only supply you an expensive replacement gearbox.There was a recall in 2011 that covered diesel models.



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