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View Full Version : 08 X3 1K Mile Report Card


bobkap
02-18-2008, 07:22 AM
Stuff: 6M, ServoT, PDC, Heated Std. Seats, Silver-Gray, Black Sensatech/ Sheepskins, std. radio.
Handling: Tight, Crisp and Sure, especially for an SUV.
Zip: Good, but expected more from the 3.0L plant coupled to the 6M.
Trans: Needs a lower ratio for 6th; that torquey 3.0L can absolutely handle 2000rpm @ 70.
MPG: 27-28 HWY @ 60-70, 18-20 city using 1-3-5 gears.
In the snow: Too little here so far to judge.
Clutch: Gone from mutual hatred to malignant dislike; Zeckhausen is imminent.
Overall: Happy but not thrilled; maybe I expected too much; for the money, I deserve to be thrilled.
Do it over again: An unemotional Yup.
Message to BMWNA:
1. Give us more bang for the buck, i.e more std. stuff, don't nickel dime us. Example: light pkg., good navigation, leather std, auto rv mirror.
2. When a problem such as the 6A pops up, don't hide but rather task your great engineers to fix it mach schnell!
3. As BMW people, we're loyal but not stupid; take us for granted at your own peril!!

kjboyd
02-18-2008, 08:04 AM
ZIP: UNDER 7 seconds isn't good enough for you in an SUV?!?!

MJS
02-18-2008, 08:14 AM
I would imagine that compared to the 635 and the GTO, it does feel a bit anemic.

hot_croc
02-18-2008, 08:37 AM
Thanks for the review, bobkap! Good info!

bobkap
02-18-2008, 11:17 AM
ZIP: UNDER 7 seconds isn't good enough for you in an SUV?!?!
KJ,
Touche: That 3.0L is hauling over 2 tons on it's back so maybe I need to give the X3 some slack. Since I alternate between my Tri-Power GTO and Alpina 6, I'm spoiled.
Other side is these 2 rocket ships would be mobile coffins if ever driven in the wet, ice or snow.
Thanks for keeping me on the straight and narrow.
bobkap

markled
02-18-2008, 11:32 AM
bobkap,

please post your findings on the Zeckhausen; my wife's neck would greatly benefit from any improvement in clutch action.:)

AzNMpower32
02-18-2008, 11:33 AM
ZIP: UNDER 7 seconds isn't good enough for you in an SUV?!?!
Seriously. I think the old 2.5 litre I have is enough. However, I have a bias to think more European, i.e more the handling and chassis balance instead of (insert Clarkson voice here) "POWERRRRRR!!", so I have a relatively low threshold for calling things "fast". I also tend to look for low fuel consumption........I often monitor instant fuel consumption. I actually think the 3.0si is very fast after having it for a loaner. Many times when I dropped two gears to merge for the freeway, I almost ran into the person in front of me. It was like "hang on and woahhhhhh there's a car!!!!!!!!" :rofl:

If you wanted more toys and bang for the buck, BMW is not the ideal brand for you. BMW already bows down to the American desire for more standard features, and we pay less for BMWs than the rest of the world. What if I told you that in Europe, on the same top 3.0si model, you pay extra for electric seats, the moonroof, leatherette (cloth is standard), automatic gearbox (of course), automatic climate, rain sensor, automatic headlamps.....etc the list goes on. Be thankful that BMW doesn't charge more for less as it does (and should, if it wants to be profitable). I was especially disappointed when BMW made AT a no-cost option in 2006.

I'm fairly honest when it comes to people's tastes and preferences. My uncle in NYC wanted a new X5 3.0si, but had relatively tight budget and low price ceiling of around $50k. I recommended the Acura MDX, something he was totally unfamiliar with because he had always wanted an X5 for many years. I told him the Acura had a lot of standard features that he would pay extra for on the X5, and that the MDX was very good in driving dynamics as well. In the end, he bought the MDX because it had sat nav and fancy electronic gizmos and toys, and paid about $4k less than an ideal X5 I had configured for him. And although the sat nav and voice commands are preposterously confusing, it is a good vehicle for the money. That's what he wanted, good value. And that's what I gave him, a good value.

(To be honest, the kindest thing I can probably say about the MDX is that it has a good ride.)

kjboyd
02-18-2008, 12:36 PM
Funny thing perception and speed.
I think back to the late 80s in highschool...
I remember a time pulling up next to a trans-am to get on the freeway in my 71 2002. He was rev-rev so i thought what the hell... he shot out, i kept up pretty well, till we have to turn on to the freeway.. .and low and behold who kept going and out ran him... ME!

it's not all about 0-60 or top speed, it's how you handle it once you are there.

bobkap
02-18-2008, 12:42 PM
Az,
I think BMW's profitability has more to do with location in a socialist country rather than gifting USA buyers with standard equipment, if indeed, there is a profit crisis. Personally, I don't consider auto-dimming rv mirrors, the light pkg and leather as "toys". I do agree with you about the 6A trans. As far as acceleration goes, here in Jersey, tailgaiters and rabid on-rampers rule so you better be packing some potent g's if you don't want some idiot in your trunk! I agree with the MDX comment as I leased an 04 before the X3.
bobkap

AzNMpower32
02-18-2008, 01:34 PM
Az,
I think BMW's profitability has more to do with location in a socialist country rather than gifting USA buyers with standard equipment, if indeed, there is a profit crisis. Personally, I don't consider auto-dimming rv mirrors, the light pkg and leather as "toys". I do agree with you about the 6A trans. As far as acceleration goes, here in Jersey, tailgaiters and rabid on-rampers rule so you better be packing some potent g's if you don't want some idiot in your trunk! I agree with the MDX comment as I leased an 04 before the X3.
bobkap
I've driven in Joisey.......eh my biggest issue is the fact that people can't stay right and pass left. However, this is a problem in many areas so its not unique to NJ. The NJ Turnpike and GSP piss me off though, with the sheer number of cops especially on the latter. Never had an issue with tailgaters though......if I need to accelerate on the freeway on-ramps I usually just use my right foot. I have a bad propensity to get overly-aggressive in NYC as well. To me, redlining is fine when needed to gain speed quickly, but there are some who disagree. To each their own.

I actually don't like auto-dimming mirrors; my parents' 325i has it and I wish they didn't dim because it's too dark. Thankfully, its only on the inside mirror for the '04 X3s. I dunno.......I tend to care more for "sport options" and save on the convenience options I don't need. My friend ordered an '08 X5 4.8i with no premium package or Bluetooth, and I thought that was a neat way to keep costs down. He did get sport and technology package though.

Andrew*Debbie
02-18-2008, 02:20 PM
I actually don't like auto-dimming mirrors; my parents' 325i has it and I wish they didn't dim because it's too dark.

+1

We went from Auto Dimming on our 325i to twisting the clown nose on the X3.

I'd like the auto dim more if there was a way to override it. Sometime the sensor dimmed the mirror when I didn't want it dimmed.


I haven't tried it in one of the new platform cars. Maybe they have improved it.

crazybelgian
02-18-2008, 03:03 PM
Az,
I think BMW's profitability has more to do with location in a socialist country rather than gifting USA buyers with standard equipment, if indeed, there is a profit crisis.

Can you elaborate on this point of view?

AzNMpower32
02-18-2008, 03:42 PM
I haven't tried it in one of the new platform cars. Maybe they have improved it.
Nope, they haven't. It's even worse in the E90 because not only do they (inside and out) dim too much, but the side mirrors are too small. The Euro-spec wide-angle mirrors are also very expensive at $200 something each. It's one of many annoyances when I drive that car. It's not like I often cause accidents by changing lanes, but it causes me more worry than necessary when I drive.

bobkap
02-18-2008, 04:13 PM
I've driven in Joisey.......eh my biggest issue is the fact that people can't stay right and pass left. However, this is a problem in many areas so its not unique to NJ. The NJ Turnpike and GSP piss me off though, with the sheer number of cops especially on the latter. Never had an issue with tailgaters though......if I need to accelerate on the freeway on-ramps I usually just use my right foot. I have a bad propensity to get overly-aggressive in NYC as well. To me, redlining is fine when needed to gain speed quickly, but there are some who disagree. To each their own.

I actually don't like auto-dimming mirrors; my parents' 325i has it and I wish they didn't dim because it's too dark. Thankfully, its only on the inside mirror for the '04 X3s. I dunno.......I tend to care more for "sport options" and save on the convenience options I don't need. My friend ordered an '08 X5 4.8i with no premium package or Bluetooth, and I thought that was a neat way to keep costs down. He did get sport and technology package though.
Az,
I drive the GSP to my shore house almost every weekend hugging the rt. lane at 65-70. If I don't get tailgaited at least 6 times during the 90 min. drive, it's a minor miracle. More than a few times the jerk passing on the right behind me was coming on so fast, I had no choice but to squeeze every g out of my X3 to get the hell out of harm's way. For me, drag racing ended a long time ago when I ceased running my GTO at the strip.

x3eer
02-18-2008, 04:23 PM
Seriously. I think the old 2.5 litre I have is enough. However, I have a bias to think more European, i.e more the handling and chassis balance instead of (insert Clarkson voice here) "POWERRRRRR!!", so I have a relatively low threshold for calling things "fast". I also tend to look for low fuel consumption........I often monitor instant fuel consumption. I actually think the 3.0si is very fast after having it for a loaner. Many times when I dropped two gears to merge for the freeway, I almost ran into the person in front of me. It was like "hang on and woahhhhhh there's a car!!!!!!!!" :rofl:

If you wanted more toys and bang for the buck, BMW is not the ideal brand for you. BMW already bows down to the American desire for more standard features, and we pay less for BMWs than the rest of the world. What if I told you that in Europe, on the same top 3.0si model, you pay extra for electric seats, the moonroof, leatherette (cloth is standard), automatic gearbox (of course), automatic climate, rain sensor, automatic headlamps.....etc the list goes on. Be thankful that BMW doesn't charge more for less as it does (and should, if it wants to be profitable). I was especially disappointed when BMW made AT a no-cost option in 2006.

I'm fairly honest when it comes to people's tastes and preferences. My uncle in NYC wanted a new X5 3.0si, but had relatively tight budget and low price ceiling of around $50k. I recommended the Acura MDX, something he was totally unfamiliar with because he had always wanted an X5 for many years. I told him the Acura had a lot of standard features that he would pay extra for on the X5, and that the MDX was very good in driving dynamics as well. In the end, he bought the MDX because it had sat nav and fancy electronic gizmos and toys, and paid about $4k less than an ideal X5 I had configured for him. And although the sat nav and voice commands are preposterously confusing, it is a good vehicle for the money. That's what he wanted, good value. And that's what I gave him, a good value.

(To be honest, the kindest thing I can probably say about the MDX is that it has a good ride.)


+1

i always think my 3.0si has more than enough power to play and have fun with it. i often find myself stepping off the gas pedal to avoid running into the car in front of me while merging for the freeway.

i don't know what kind of character or fun-to-drive category he expected.. may be a fully loaded BMW badged Porsche Cayenne S with 45k price tag is what he expected on X3. :)

bobotski
02-18-2008, 04:32 PM
Message to BMWNA:
1. Give us more bang for the buck, i.e more std. stuff, don't nickel dime us. Example: light pkg., good navigation, leather std, auto rv mirror.

Didn't you do a test drive and customize your order? Can't complain much on this one since you knew what you were getting into when you made the purchase.

AzNMpower32
02-18-2008, 05:06 PM
Az,
I drive the GSP to my shore house almost every weekend hugging the rt. lane at 65-70. If I don't get tailgaited at least 6 times during the 90 min. drive, it's a minor miracle. More than a few times the jerk passing on the right behind me was coming on so fast, I had no choice but to squeeze every g out of my X3 to get the hell out of harm's way. For me, drag racing ended a long time ago when I ceased running my GTO at the strip.
It's weird, but when traffic is flowing fast, I kind of flow with it :eeps:. In Jersey, that ends up usually between 75-80mph.

If I am in the rightmost lane (which is rare), I don't care if someone tailgates me. I'm in the right lane, I'm at or above the speed limit, so I'm not movin any faster no matter who's behind me. I especially love it when teenagers dodge and weave and get behind me while I'm on the right half of the freeway. At this point. I just keep my speed and ignore how close he/she is or any hand gestures that may arise. Call me arrogant, but if I'm in the right lane and I'm doin +5 the limit, I can stay at that speed.

Don't worry, jerks who are weaving and speeding way above the limit aren't likely to run into you. They'll inch up on my rear end, but that doesn't pressure me.

bobkap
02-19-2008, 05:20 AM
It's weird, but when traffic is flowing fast, I kind of flow with it :eeps:. In Jersey, that ends up usually between 75-80mph.

If I am in the rightmost lane (which is rare), I don't care if someone tailgates me. I'm in the right lane, I'm at or above the speed limit, so I'm not movin any faster no matter who's behind me. I especially love it when teenagers dodge and weave and get behind me while I'm on the right half of the freeway. At this point. I just keep my speed and ignore how close he/she is or any hand gestures that may arise. Call me arrogant, but if I'm in the right lane and I'm doin +5 the limit, I can stay at that speed.

Don't worry, jerks who are weaving and speeding way above the limit aren't likely to run into you. They'll inch up on my rear end, but that doesn't pressure me.
Az,
I do worry since I was once rearended in the right lane by a blonde babe in an X5. Saw her in the rv mirror passing on the shoulder until she spotted a tire changer ahead then swerved into my lane and nailed me. Wish I could adopt your philosophy but having a car 3 feet from my rear at 70mph makes me very uncomfortable. As far as the cops go, seen so many fly up behind some tailgaiter then zip around an go on their way. I don't think they care.
bobkap

bobkap
02-19-2008, 06:10 AM
Didn't you do a test drive and customize your order? Can't complain much on this one since you knew what you were getting into when you made the purchase.
Bob,
Sure, I knew and I did a good demo and selected the X3 based on comparison against others given many more factors than acceleration performance alone. My point is that I'm satisfied in that category but not thrilled, maybe thrill comes in the form of a 3.5L plant.
This X3 is my 8th BMW so I make observations based upon previous long term experience within the brand. As an engineer myself, I have always felt an engineering "presence" in every BMW I've owned; this is my main attraction to the marque. Perception is reality to the perceiver, otherwise, there'd be no other icecream flavor but vanilla.
bobkap

bobkap
02-19-2008, 07:21 AM
bobkap,

please post your findings on the Zeckhausen; my wife's neck would greatly benefit from any improvement in clutch action.:)
markled,
Sure, I'll let you know, will probably do it myself on a warm day.
bobkap

snb3
02-19-2008, 12:39 PM
Az,
I think BMW's profitability has more to do with location in a socialist country rather than gifting USA buyers with standard equipment, if indeed, there is a profit crisis. Personally, I don't consider auto-dimming rv mirrors, the light pkg and leather as "toys". I do agree with you about the 6A trans. As far as acceleration goes, here in Jersey, tailgaiters and rabid on-rampers rule so you better be packing some potent g's if you don't want some idiot in your trunk! I agree with the MDX comment as I leased an 04 before the X3.
bobkap

Socialist? You live in Jersey!!:p

anyways, I've driven many X3s and felt they were fast enough.Our prev car was a Pilot (same as prev MDX) which was fast enough also. Driving our 08 X3 during ED (which should've been faster than older X3s) felt "tight", not as free-revving as others I've driven. I'd assume after , say 5k, it'll open up a bit.

bobkap
02-20-2008, 05:19 AM
snb3,
Jersey socialist ??......absolutely. Middle class and industry leaving in droves; leaches arriving in droves.
Commonality between our 2 states is our governor is a professed socialist, yours is a closet socialist. Regarding my "tight" handling observation, perhaps "taut" would have been a better choice of words, was not referring to that nice free-revving 3.0L plant.
Previous SUV was an 04 MDX, was very satisfied with it's general utility and although pretty fast, was terribly boring to drive. One thing it had that I really miss in my X3 is the AWD lock-up feature.
Cheers,
\bobkap

MJS
02-20-2008, 06:48 AM
snb3,
One thing it had that I really miss in my X3 is the AWD lock-up feature.
Cheers,
\bobkap

Can you expound on this? Just curious where/how you used this feature.

Thanks.

bobkap
02-20-2008, 07:19 AM
MJS,
Sure, the MDX had a button on the dash that locked up all 4 wheeks via electrical solenoid clutches; was great for driving on the beach in deep sand. Acura warned never to drive on the road with this engaged or you'd trash the driveline.
Does this answer your question?
I'm reluctant to take my X3 on the beach due to inability for lock-up.
Hate to create a new thread but it's probably the fastest way to determine if the X3 is beach worthy.
bobkap
bobkap

MJS
02-20-2008, 07:43 AM
Yes it does. Thanks. I can see that need on a sandy beach or even an extremely steep incline of snow. I wonder if it just locked the center diff. I can't see it locking the front and rear diffs.

I couldn't tell ya if the X3 is beach worthy. Might do just fine with lowering the tire pressure.

bobkap
02-20-2008, 08:17 AM
Experiments on sandy roads indicated front and back were locked solid.
As I understand the MDX system, there are 4 solenoid clutches that can work independently on command from sensors or in unison via the dash button.
My concern without lock-up is clutch slippage which generates heat which generates wear which generates big repair bucks.
bobkap

SeeYal
02-20-2008, 08:22 AM
Stuff: 6M, ServoT, PDC, Heated Std. Seats, Silver-Gray, Black Sensatech/ Sheepskins, std. radio.
Handling: Tight, Crisp and Sure, especially for an SUV.
Zip: Good, but expected more from the 3.0L plant coupled to the 6M.
Trans: Needs a lower ratio for 6th; that torquey 3.0L can absolutely handle 2000rpm @ 70.
MPG: 27-28 HWY @ 60-70, 18-20 city using 1-3-5 gears.
In the snow: Too little here so far to judge.
Clutch: Gone from mutual hatred to malignant dislike; Zeckhausen is imminent.
Overall: Happy but not thrilled; maybe I expected too much; for the money, I deserve to be thrilled.
Do it over again: An unemotional Yup.
Message to BMWNA:
1. Give us more bang for the buck, i.e more std. stuff, don't nickel dime us. Example: light pkg., good navigation, leather std, auto rv mirror.
2. When a problem such as the 6A pops up, don't hide but rather task your great engineers to fix it mach schnell!
3. As BMW people, we're loyal but not stupid; take us for granted at your own peril!!

:thumbdwn: is pretty harsh for a rather "not negative" post...?:dunno:

bobkap
02-20-2008, 09:06 AM
SeeYall,
Please excuse me; I'm an professional engineer, not a diplomat.
With 8 previous and 3 present Bimmers in my life, I've earned a license to be critically objective. Relax, I'm friend; my opinion of many other brands wouldn't even be allowed in print.
Cheers,
bobkap

snb3
02-20-2008, 06:15 PM
snb3,
Jersey socialist ??......absolutely. Middle class and industry leaving in droves; leaches arriving in droves.
Commonality between our 2 states is our governor is a professed socialist, yours is a closet socialist. Regarding my "tight" handling observation, perhaps "taut" would have been a better choice of words, was not referring to that nice free-revving 3.0L plant.
Previous SUV was an 04 MDX, was very satisfied with it's general utility and although pretty fast, was terribly boring to drive. One thing it had that I really miss in my X3 is the AWD lock-up feature.
Cheers,
\bobkap


Jersey sounds just like LA & CA. Socialist Governator and the Communist Mayor Tony "no longer Raigosa" Villar. But thats for another forum.

Didn't know about Honda's having a lockup feature but if you tested it yourself, I guess it does. I know if I needed another larger suv after the Pilot, I would try the new MDX (lower center of gravity w/ magnetic shocks.)

bobkap
02-21-2008, 05:41 AM
snb3,
After a 39mo lease in an 04 MDX, I can say without reservation that it was a fine SUV in every respect save handling. BTW, it definitely did have the AWD lock-up button. For our next SUV we wanted smaller so the RDX topped the list of contenders, that is, until the demo drive; the stupid turbo 4 put a quick end to the RDX's contention. If I wanted the same MDX size, I'd now be driving the new MDX, SH-AWD version. As it is, I'm very happy with my X3, 6M choice; I might even be thrilled upon replacing that ***%%$###@!! CDV.
cheers,
bobkap