More driving impressions after driving it for 15 miles this evening. The 2014 X3 drives great. I will undoubtedly drive it in Sport Mode and wifey already decided that it is Eco Pro for her. In Sport Mode it is peppy, but the gas mileage suffers. It's her ride and I will occasionally drive it on weekends, unless I need to haul something like one of my bikes. The design and engineering of the 2014 X3 is amazing. I cannot believe how well BMW did with the X3. The cabin dimensions for the front seats and rear seats are heavenly. BMW has the dimensions dialed into perfection for a small SUV. The iDrive is spectacular. Beautiful graphics, evolutionary improved user interfaces, much quicker at everything, higher resolution. Premium sound and the xenon headlights are well worth the additional cost. The sun roof is gigantic and very cool. Wifey is extremely happy with the X3. In hindsight I should have dropped HUD and TopView and gotten the larger engine for a delta of about $1050. All things considered both wifey and I are quite happy with the 2014 X3. Having owned a number of BMW's including an LCI M-Sport E60 550i, the 2014 X3 is about 95% of an LCI so it is a fine value. The iDrive, Nav, and other minor improvements are substantial enhancements to a class leading luxury, sporty, small SUV.
What I didn't like was my experience with BMW Customer Relations. 3 times after I placed the order I called asking them to look into whether the 2014 was getting the upgraded iDrive, Nav, and HUD. I just got a bunch of obfuscation. They were not the least bit responsive or pro-active. I might as well have been talking to a call center in India. No offense to Indians. I am going to write BMW NA and complain. BMW Customer Relations was totally worthless and they certainly made a confusing, frustrating situation, worse. This was not the type of experience that one would expect in purchasing a $52,000 German car and is opposite of the great service and support that BMW typically provides for its valued clients. My other issue is that the build quality of this US built BMW is clearly inferior to my past 6 German built new BMW's. I understand manufacturing tolerances and specifications and that with all of these pieces that perfection does not exist. However, puckered, overly wavy, rippled leather seams on the top of both front seats is clearly out of specification for BMW. The perforated mesh speaker grille on the top of the driver's door should not be rippled and lumpy. These are things that I noticed when I was not even looking for manufacturing flaws. The vast majority of the fit and finish was quite well done and beautiful. BMW has been working hard at creating visually rich, well detailed interiors striving to match the impeccable fit and finish of Audi's. BMW has made great progress. However my US built X3 falls short of what one would expect of a premium German vehicle. I may send photographs to BMW NA and wait for their response.
All things considered I highly recommend the 2014 BMW X3. I will post photographs tomorrow.
04 Successfully lobbied BMW NA and BMW FS to prohibit dealers from using residual values based upon Euro Delivery MSRP and to use US MSRP saving BMW Enthusiasts several thousand dollars on each lease
14 550i Euro Del
14 X3 2.8i
11 550i Euro Del, Retired
08 550i Euro Del, Retired
06 330i Euro Del, Retired
04 545i Euro Del, Retired
01 530i Euro Del, Retired