BMW X3’s exterior design front side with the forward-slanting BMW kidney grille and large headlight assembly combine with a powerful-looking front apron and hood boasting six contour lines sweeping down to meet at the kidney grill. When equipped with the optional Xenon headlights, the Corona Rings and daytime running lights are illuminated by bright white LEDs. The taillights, which are located far to the outside, have a distinctive T-shape that is characteristic of the BMW X3. LED light bars create a distinctive BMW night-time design signature.
Dimensionally, compared to its predecessor the new X3 is a half-inch (12mm) taller, 3.36-inches (83mm) longer, 1.1-inches (28mm) wider, and features a half-inch (12mm) more ground clearance. It rides on a wheelbase which is 0.6-inches (15mm) longer, at 110.6 inches (2810mm).
The interior has been redesigned from the ground up and now features a classic four-dial instrument layout along with a more driver orientated center console housing a large 8.8-inch high-resolution screen.
In the U.S., the 2011 BMW X3 will be offered at launch with two straight six-engines, both matted to a new 8-speed automatic transmission.
The entry-level X3 xDrive28i features BMW’s 3.0-liter inline-six rated at 240HP at 6,600 rpm and 230 lb-ft of torque between 2,600 and 3,000 rpm, enough to accelerate from 0 -60 mph in 6.7 seconds or half-a-second quicker than the previous X3 xDrive30i equipped with an automatic transmission.
The flagship X3 xDrive35i gets the Bavarian firm’s newest turbocharged 3.0-liter straight-six “N55″ engine combining direct fuel injection, twin-scroll turbo technology and Valvetronic. It produces an output of 300HP at 5,800 rpm, with peak torque of 300 lb-ft available all the way from 1,200–5,000 rpm. Redline is 7,000 rpm.
With this engine, the new BMW X3 sprints from 0 to 60mph (96km/h) in 5.5 seconds and reaches an electronically limited top speed of 155mpg (250km/h) when fitted with the optional Sport Package.
In Europe, the 2011 BMW X3 will be available with two engine variants at launch. The xDrive20d is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine delivering 184HP and 380Nm / 280.2 lb-ft, hooked up to a standard six-speed manual or an optional eight-speed auto.
It can accelerate from zero to 100km/h (62mph) in 8.5 seconds and top out at 210km/h (131mph), while returning a combined fuel economy of 5.6 lt/100km (42mpg US or 50.4mpg UK).
The top-end X3 xDrive35i makes use of the same straight-six turbo found on the U.S.-spec model, however output is rated at 306HP and 400Nm / 295 lb-ft. This engine enables the X3 to sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62mph) in 5.7 seconds and achieve a top speed of 245 km/h (152mph). Average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle is 8.8 lt/100 km (26.7mpg US or 32.1mpg UK) and the CO2 emission level is 204 g/km.
More engine variants including four-cylinder gasoline engines and a 204HP 2.0-liter diesel will be introduced to the range in late 2011.All xDrive models feature the latest generation of BMW’s intelligent all-wheel drive that splits torque 40 per cent to the front wheels and 60 per cent at the rear under normal driving conditions.