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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 04-30-2012, 04:54 PM
NYG010 NYG010 is offline
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Fuel economy

Hey guys, so I knew the x3 was pretty bad on gas before I bought it but I didn't expect ~15mpg combined, bad. Any tips on things to look for? All my tires are nice and full, engine oil just changed, etc. Any tips?
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  #2  
Old 04-30-2012, 05:23 PM
can0n4 can0n4 is offline
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15 is a good week for me
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  #3  
Old 04-30-2012, 05:24 PM
todd92 todd92 is offline
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We average 22 mpg with ours. Recent oil change has nothing to do with gas mileage. If the tires are properly inflated, then it's all driving style.
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  #4  
Old 04-30-2012, 06:15 PM
elevatorguy925 elevatorguy925 is offline
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I have been getting about 20 combined, 18 in town. I drive hard at times, are you leaving it in sport mode? I know that will knock it down.
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  #5  
Old 04-30-2012, 06:22 PM
NYG010 NYG010 is offline
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Nope, I rarely ever use sport mode (honestly I dont see the difference anyway). But either way, with you guys getting 20+ how much highway driving do you guys do? 30/70 city hwy?
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  #6  
Old 04-30-2012, 06:28 PM
elevatorguy925 elevatorguy925 is offline
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I think my split is 50/50
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  #7  
Old 04-30-2012, 06:48 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYG010 View Post
Any tips on things to look for? All my tires are nice and full, engine oil just changed, etc. Any tips?
Air filter looks good?

BMW maintenance schedule tends to imply air filters last a really long time.

Even without falling into the extreme service category, your driving environment might require a more frequent filter change.

Any chance that a brake caliper is sticking and causing drag?

Try to drive between clusters of traffic rather than mixed in with them.

Try wearing lighter weight shoes for driving (similar to driving shoes).
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  #8  
Old 04-30-2012, 07:34 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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The X3, as with any heavy vehicle, consumes fuel heavily in urban driving, especially with the older engines (M54 in the US). Everyone's definition of "urban driving" is different, but 15 US mpg is about on par for a vehicle that sees stop-and-go, stoplight to stoplight traffic with speeds staying below 80km/h (50mph) almost all the time.

The usual fuel efficiency tips apply. Accelerate moderately, time your distance between traffic stops and jams, adjust your speed to minimise brakes when possible.

My signature (clickable) does provide an indication of what kind of driving each fill up consists of but obviously not the breakdown %. Most of my driving is suburban or rural, and I've been adept at driving efficiently for YEARS so it comes naturally for me. I've reset the BC before in city centre/urban city driving, usually get about 14-15 l/100km (16-17 US mpg) before suburban/hwy gets mixed in.

I b*tch and moan about getting no better than 8,4 l/100km (28 US mpg) in long-distance rural driving, but it's all about owner expectations I guess.
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  #9  
Old 04-30-2012, 10:25 PM
NYG010 NYG010 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzNMpower32 View Post
The X3, as with any heavy vehicle, consumes fuel heavily in urban driving, especially with the older engines (M54 in the US). Everyone's definition of "urban driving" is different, but 15 US mpg is about on par for a vehicle that sees stop-and-go, stoplight to stoplight traffic with speeds staying below 80km/h (50mph) almost all the time.

The usual fuel efficiency tips apply. Accelerate moderately, time your distance between traffic stops and jams, adjust your speed to minimise brakes when possible.

My signature (clickable) does provide an indication of what kind of driving each fill up consists of but obviously not the breakdown %. Most of my driving is suburban or rural, and I've been adept at driving efficiently for YEARS so it comes naturally for me. I've reset the BC before in city centre/urban city driving, usually get about 14-15 l/100km (16-17 US mpg) before suburban/hwy gets mixed in.

I b*tch and moan about getting no better than 8,4 l/100km (28 US mpg) in long-distance rural driving, but it's all about owner expectations I guess.
28mpg!?!? woah! Quit your bitchin! haha just messing with ya.. Thanks for the input! Greatly appreciated. All great advice. I sometimes do have a heavy foot off a red light or stop sign but 15mpg did seem a bit low for 60/40 city/hwy
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  #10  
Old 05-01-2012, 06:30 AM
Wongway Wongway is offline
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I have an '05, so older engine...

I've driven the newer engine X3 and know first hand that it's more fuel efficient (especially in highway driving)

My city driving nets me on the average 15-16 mpg.

On the highway, I've seen variance (due to my penchant for lead footedness) from 17-18 mpg when I'm doing 80-100 mph up to 25-26 mpg when I was limping along at 50mph because I was driving on a donut due to a flat. Normalish highway speeds, 65-75 mph, usually gets me 21-22 mpg.

So, in short, depending on your driving habits, 15mpg overall is not a real shocker to me.
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  #11  
Old 05-01-2012, 06:46 AM
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kjboyd kjboyd is offline
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  #12  
Old 05-01-2012, 06:52 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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Well the 2.5 gets better mileage than the 3.0 so that might account for AzN's figures, although what he says is true enough. I personally think that some cars just get better mileage than others of the same model, make and year. Driving style is the real game changer however. I have noticed a settling down of my mileage over the past 80K miles, it has dropped to about 17.5 with 60/40 town and highway driving (3.0). We pay now about $4.59 per gallon for premium but it goes up and down, so the cost is not insignificant. I was thinking that I could buy a new Jetta Sportwagon TDI for the money I would save on gas if I just drove more. Some in-law relatives have one and swear they get over 50 mpg on the road and close to 40 in town.

Last edited by UncleJ; 05-01-2012 at 06:53 AM.
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  #13  
Old 05-01-2012, 07:28 AM
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X3emist X3emist is offline
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I question accuracy of the BMW monitor

The reported MPG varies way to much to be accurate. In our 06 3.0 we get 14-15, mainly around town driving. It gets 20+ on the highway. I do not think the on board computer is accurate as everyone with the same engine outta get much closer to the same results. No reason one gets 15 and another 19.
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  #14  
Old 05-01-2012, 11:41 AM
NYG010 NYG010 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X3emist View Post
The reported MPG varies way to much to be accurate. In our 06 3.0 we get 14-15, mainly around town driving. It gets 20+ on the highway. I do not think the on board computer is accurate as everyone with the same engine outta get much closer to the same results. No reason one gets 15 and another 19.
I agree. Lets blame it on the on board computer!!!
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  #15  
Old 05-01-2012, 12:49 PM
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Captain Roundel Captain Roundel is offline
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We took our first long trip this weekend, looks like we got 18-20mpg on the highway. Its an 04 that we picked up last week.
Not great mileage but very very nice driving.

Last edited by Captain Roundel; 05-01-2012 at 06:55 PM.
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  #16  
Old 05-01-2012, 01:56 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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The BC is only slightly optimistic for me, probably a few tenths l/100km based on observed/recorded on Spritmonitor versus displayed on the BC (like 8,5 displayed versus 8,8 actual). I think a lot of it may have to do with driver habits and environment.
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  #17  
Old 05-01-2012, 05:41 PM
shendrick shendrick is offline
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I was getting average mileage in high teens - but I was also going through rotors like crazy. BMW fianlly agreed to replace the calipers and as is well now. Gas mileage has taken a big jump to low 20's on the highway at 75ish. If you had the same problem you would have been warping rotors as well. If this is not the case, you'll need to look elsewhere.
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  #18  
Old 05-02-2012, 07:12 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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The pre-LCI (2004-06) vehicles are a bit harder on gas. That being said, to achieve anything even close to an accurate reading of your average fuel mileage off of the computer (BC), you have to reset it each time you fill up; if you don't, it continues to average over time, using everything it's averaged up to that point. And since you recently bought the car used, if you didn't reset the fuel average, it may still have a long history of mileage averages from the previous owner...
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  #19  
Old 05-02-2012, 09:36 AM
DrummerMan DrummerMan is offline
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NYG010 -- I'm averaging 21.2 mpg for over 50k miles (I bought my '07 CPO X3 6MT with 20k miles on it and have almost 72k now). I would guess I do about 50-50 city and highway. I don't keep records on this, but I do update the "average mph" calc on the computer at every fill-up and I'm usually in the low to mid 40's for average mph. I usually drive 5-10 mph over the speed limit in town and cruise about 10-15 mph over on the hi-way. As for the computer's calc of the mpg (which I also update at every fill-up), it has averaged 21.1 over the same time frame, just 0.1 under the "actual", or just slightly "conservative". On more than one occasion, filling it up while already warm and then getting immediately onto the county road and cruising at 60-65 mph, the computer will reach over 29 mpg...

As for tips, I'm at a loss to think of anything you likely have not heard or thought of... I wish I had some better advice for you. I do know that driving style is THE big contributor, but we DO want to enjoy these vehicles, don't we??!! I would definitely check the brakes for any warpage/binding. I try to keep the tires of my BMW at the recommended pressures, unlike other cars I have owned (VW, Honda, Subaru), where I would inflate 2-4 psi over the recommended. I have noticed a slight reduction in mpg going from the OEM Pirelli Scorpions to Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus: from 21.4 down to 20.8; have had the Michelins for about 21K miles now. (But the improved ride and impact harshness are well worth the delta!) What kind of tires do you have on your X3???

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  #20  
Old 05-06-2012, 09:53 PM
silentbob silentbob is offline
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I got my 2004 3.0 in January and average 21mpg over the 6K miles I've had it. 70% Highway, 30% city. No other advice, but worth checking the basics - no warning lights on (check-engine and the like?), fully inflated tires, passing smog (or NJ equivalent), transmission (assuming AT) in D mode vs SD?
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  #21  
Old 05-07-2012, 12:02 AM
littleengin littleengin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wongway View Post
I have an '05, so older engine...

I've driven the newer engine X3 and know first hand that it's more fuel efficient (especially in highway driving)

My city driving nets me on the average 15-16 mpg.

On the highway, I've seen variance (due to my penchant for lead footedness) from 17-18 mpg when I'm doing 80-100 mph up to 25-26 mpg when I was limping along at 50mph because I was driving on a donut due to a flat. Normalish highway speeds, 65-75 mph, usually gets me 21-22 mpg.

So, in short, depending on your driving habits, 15mpg overall is not a real shocker to me.
Yep. All city/suburban driving. Average MPG is 15 with average MPH around 20. When on the highway I can get 21 - 23 MPG.
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  #22  
Old 05-07-2012, 07:36 AM
swapsafari swapsafari is offline
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Did approx. 300 miles of highway driving this past weekend and got 26 MPG. I am usually a small city driver with lots of lights and that averages out to 19 MPG. Happy about that!
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  #23  
Old 05-07-2012, 08:52 PM
chagrin chagrin is offline
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We get 17 city and 24 highway in our 2004 X3 3.0i
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  #24  
Old 05-08-2012, 07:42 AM
MichiganApril MichiganApril is offline
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After resetting the "MPG" and the "MPH" on the dashboard to zero- after filling up, I've noticed that the averages are roughly 19 MPG in town, and usually 22 MPG on the highway..(I have an '04 x3 2.5)
I was very curious about how people get the 28 MPG, seems a little impossible but they say the diesels are great on mileage.
I was hoping for better MPG also, but honestly, for the quality of vehicle, and knowing it's a type of "SUV"-- we're slightly lucky in comparison. Some get 14-16 MPG at best with their SUV's!
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  #25  
Old 05-15-2012, 07:00 AM
Km0n Km0n is offline
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Mein Auto: 04-x3-2.5 black 6spd 110k
21.2 average combo mpg. 6speed, drive fairly hard and around 80mph on the highway whenever i can. Fresh plugs, and soon to be new precat o2 sensors.
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