The new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) aims to be a dynamic all-rounder with a six-cylinder diesel and M Sport package. The first test drive in the BMW X3 xDrive 30d with 286 hp shows what the refreshed SUV has to offer.
The new BMW X3 Facelift (2021), which is ready for the first test drive, will also locate its main sales market - like its predecessor - in China. The European market for the mid-range SUV ranks third behind the USA. Nevertheless, the X3 is also a real box-office hit in this country. With a six-cylinder in-line diesel engine, the BMW X3 xDrive 30d is opposed to Audi Q5 50 TDI quattro, Mercedes GLC 400 d 4Matic and Jaguar F-Pace D300 AWD, among others. With a price from 60,600 euros, the BMW ranks just behind the Audi, which is the cheapest of the four named competitors with a starting price of 58,450 euros (all prices as of October 2021).
FIRST TEST DRIVE IN THE NEW BMW X3 FACELIFT (2021)
The new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) comes with a new design at the front and rear. During our first test drive with the BMW X3 xDrive 30d, the SUV also dresses in the M Sport package, which comes with a sharpened front apron and black accents all around. The M addition is also noticeable in the interior. In the modern and clear cockpit of the X3, which was taken over from the 4-series, we put our hands on the heated M leather steering wheel. The sports seats are standard and do not have a classic fabric cover. With comfortable ergonomics, the still relatively large number of physical controls and the optional 12.3-inch touchscreen are easy to reach. A numbered row of buttons below the screen can be assigned shortcuts to the most important functions of the infotainment system.
NEW BMW X3 FACELIFT (2021) WITH COMFORTABLE DAMPING
As is typical for BMW, the new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) comes with three preconfigured driving modes that we can select during our first test drive by pressing a button on the center console. In Comfort mode, the steering, dampers and engine response are designed for comfortable travel. The Eco-Plus mode is designed for economical operation at low speeds. Sport mode noticeably tightens the steering and dampers, but the X3 is never uncomfortable. Driving enjoyment and fuel consumption are significantly increased: the six-cylinder in the new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) actually slows down unnecessarily and makes itself acoustically noticeable.
IMPROVED DYNAMICS IN THE NEW BMW X3 FACELIFT (2021)
Since the adaptive sports suspension, variable sports steering and eight-speed sports transmission were available to us during the first test drive with the new BMW X3 Facelift (2021), the country road section also turned out to be correspondingly sporty. In conjunction with the sport driving mode, the diesel X3 is transformed into an SUV with an extra portion of driving fun. Of course, the BMW, which weighs 1935 kilograms according to the manufacturer, will not turn into a gazelle, but the powerful diesel engine in conjunction with the appropriately tuned chassis of the new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) skillfully manages to hide the weight. Incidentally, all-wheel drive is standard on the 30d, as is the still excellent eight-speed automatic transmission (Steptronic) from ZF.
NEW BMW X3 FACELIFT (2021) WITH A POWERFUL DIESEL ENGINE
All engines of the new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) are equipped with 48-volt mild hybrid technology, which contributes eleven hp with a belt starter generator. In addition to the X3 xDrive 30d, which mobilizes 286 hp from its in-line six-cylinder, BMW also offers a 190-hp four-cylinder diesel in the X3 20d. The top diesel develops 340 hp and comes as the M Performance model X3 M40d. At 700 Newton meters, it is also the X3 with the highest torque. Those who prefer to drive with a petrol engine can choose between 184 (20i), 245 (30i) and 360 hp in the M40i. The plug-in hybrid xDrive30e offers a system output of 292 hp. The new BMW X3 Facelift (2021) will also benefit the battery-electric offshoot, which goes by the name iX3.