The 3rd-generation BMW X3 executive crossover/SUV, which will be produced at BMW SA’s plant in Rosslyn from next year, has been revealed ahead of its official debut at the Frankfurt motor show.
The BMW X3, as we have written before, will replace the current 3 Series as a local production model. The new model has finally been revealed and as expected, features a much more pronounced (read bigger) kidney grille. Front and rear LED lights have been designed to reflect a 3D look with a low rear roof spoiler giving it a coupe roofline feel.
It will be available in xLine, M Sport and Luxury line trim options while a unique Pythonic Blue colour is specific to the new X3 range.
Size-wise the new model is longer by 78 mm and the wheelbase is longer by 54 mm. The luggage capacity has been kept identical at 550-litres, which should translate into more passenger space.
The engine range is as to be expected with downsized turbopetrol and turbodiesel engines on offer. The range-topping motor fitted to the X3 M40i appears to be a bit of a beast with 265 kW and 500 Nm of torque. The 3.0-litre 6-cylinder turbopetrol shunts the X3 to 100 kph in just 4.8 seconds.
The rest of the range comprises an X3 30i with 185 kW using 7.4L/100 km, an X3 20d with 140 kW and 400 Nm claiming 5.4L/100 km. The X3 30d has 195 kW and 620 Nm of torque and claims just 6.0L/100 km. All models appear to be fitted with an 8-speed steptronic gearbox.
As expected weight has been shed with the new X3 over the old and it sits around 55 kg lighter now. Some of the trickle-down tech from the 7 and 5 Series has been installed in the X3 as it benefits from semi-autonomous driving, the latest version of active cruise control, gesture control and a more connected infotainment system.
The X3 will begin production in Spartanburg (South Carolina, USA) during July 2017. The South African built X3 will only begin production in April 2018. That means our first batch of X3s will be imported before local production takes over. The current 3 Series currently built at Rosslyn will cease in February 2018. The all-new BMW X3 goes on sale in South Africa in November 2017.