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X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)
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  #26  
Old 07-12-2004, 06:31 AM
mrbelk mrbelk is offline
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One thing that's never really mentioned is that comparing an x3 3.0 to an x5 3.0 isn't really an apples-to-apples comparison. The X3 3.0 has the same (or darn close) power and torque to weight ratios of the x5 4.4 (which pushes $65,000).

It's frequently the case that the the price for the "top of the line" of one series can creep into the price-range for an "entry-level" model of the next higher series. One could apply the same price agrument that you all do with the X3/X5 to 3er's and 5er's. You can easily get a 330 spec'ed out to be price-comparable with a 525, but the 330 will be more performant and will be "loaded," whereas the 525 will be more of a "stripper."

As to the comments on the interior: I personally think that the X3 interior befits it's image. The materials aren't cheap; their texture is just a little more "rugged."

The pictures shown as a "comparison" are pretty well biased towards the X5, too. The X3 pictured has gray leather with the metallic trim on a gray background with poor lighting, whereas the X5 has nice, sumptuous beige leather and the nice light-wood trim, with good lighting. Given those two images, it's obvious that the X5 interior would look nicer. Replace the X3 pic with one that has wood trim and a rich leather color (like the Terra Cotta, or Sand Beige), and the differences will become much less pronounced and more representative of what one would expect to see in two cars that are in different "strata" of the BMW food-chain.

Now, I'm sure it sounds like I am some sort of X3 apologist, but I think that it has become fashionable to deride the new BMW designs. People take shots at them without experiencing the vehicles first-hand, or they provide unfair comparisons to support their claims.

And, for the record, I like _all_ of the new BMW designs; ome of them took longer for me to come around to (the Z4 and 7er), but I like them all now. I am obviously squarely in their new target market. I am 32, an IT professional, and am on my 2nd bimmer (my first being a 2001 330i/5sp, and my current being a 545i/6sp), and will probably be getting an X3 for the wife next year. I don't like the BMW look from before the E36, so I really didn't have too much paradigm-shift to adjust to when the new styles appeared.

-MrB
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  #27  
Old 07-12-2004, 07:21 AM
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asnpcwiz asnpcwiz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbelk
People take shots at them without experiencing the vehicles first-hand, or they provide unfair comparisons to support their claims.

-MrB
I don't know if this was a shot at me or did it just happen to be posted right after mine, but for the record, I spent over 1.5 hours closely observing both cars. The opinions I wrote before were just that...my OPINIONS.

I agree that it's comparing apples and oranges. That's why I said that I see the need for both. It is obvious that BMW wants to target different markets.

I agree, that a fully loaded lower end model would often drift into the price range of a barebones higher model. But I'm also a person that agrees with the reasoning that you should just look into the higher end models if that happens.

I'm 24 and an "IT professional" as well, really...who isn't nowadays. And I think the X3 is probably marketed towards people in my demograph. A younger crowd that is willing to spend money on a decent SUV . Yet I still do not see it's appeal. If I wanted to buy a new, more rugged SUV, I'd rather spend the money on an Explorer or something, and stop kidding myself on buying a BMW SUV that is an attempt to be rugged .

For me, the X5 works best because I'm one of those pretentious people who want the look and size of an SUV, but really just want all the perks of a luxury car . For both cars, offroad capabilities are pretty limited and are best suited for getting over a curb. I'm not kidding myself by buying an X3 and thinking it's I'm more rugged, than those with an X5.

I forked out the money, admitted to my pretentiousness and bought the X5 because hey...I want an "BMWish" car, and I still want to look kinda sporty .

Last edited by asnpcwiz; 07-12-2004 at 07:24 AM.
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  #28  
Old 07-12-2004, 08:02 AM
mrbelk mrbelk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asnpcwiz
I don't know if this was a shot at me or did it just happen to be posted right after mine, but for the record, I spent over 1.5 hours closely observing both cars. The opinions I wrote before were just that...my OPINIONS.
It wasn't a shot at you, since when I started posting my message, yours wasn't up yet. But you have to admit that there are loads of people out there who have just hopped up onto the bandwagon because it's in vogue.

I think the X-series of vehicles are way more rugged than any SUV coming out of a US manufacturer, except maybe a Hummer H1; how else would the X3 come in 1st and 2nd in the ALCAN winter rally without being a good offroader? There's no way I would trust my bosses Expedition in that environment; it's way too mushy and heavy.

I guess I am of a different opinion than you w.r.t. model price creep. I would rather get a loaded version of a lesser series than an entry version of the higher series, provided that both series offered similar products. In this case, I don't see an appreciable difference between the utility of an X5 vs. the utility of an X3. The X3 has the same internal storage capacity of the X5, and has the same X-drive drivetrain. In fact, I think that an X3 offers more "BMW-ness" in the drive than an X5 given the lower weight, more agressive stance, lower COG, etc.

Anyway, that's my take. I aplogize for insulting anyone.
-MrB
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  #29  
Old 07-12-2004, 01:24 PM
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Scott ZHP Scott ZHP is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbelk
As to the comments on the interior: I personally think that the X3 interior befits it's image. The materials aren't cheap; their texture is just a little more "rugged."

The pictures shown as a "comparison" are pretty well biased towards the X5, too. The X3 pictured has gray leather with the metallic trim on a gray background with poor lighting, whereas the X5 has nice, sumptuous beige leather and the nice light-wood trim, with good lighting. Given those two images, it's obvious that the X5 interior would look nicer. Replace the X3 pic with one that has wood trim and a rich leather color (like the Terra Cotta, or Sand Beige), and the differences will become much less pronounced and more representative of what one would expect to see in two cars that are in different "strata" of the BMW food-chain.


-MrB
Um, okay, I cant do up the X3, but I can de-option the X5. Here's a photo of my wife's stripper X5 (aka the kid hauler). No premium package, no sumptious leather, no nice wood trim. IMO, it's still a much richer/more elagant look than the X3.



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  #30  
Old 07-12-2004, 01:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott ZHP
Um, okay, I cant do up the X3, but I can de-option the X5. Here's a photo of my wife's stripper X5 (aka the kid hauler). No premium package, no sumptious leather, no nice wood trim. IMO, it's still a much richer/more elagant look than the X3.
What was her price (MSRP)?
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  #31  
Old 07-12-2004, 01:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emission
What was her price (MSRP)?
Oh hell, I don't remember. Oh wait... I have a spreadsheet somewhere...

looking.
looking..
looking...

Base 38900
Freight 645
Auto 1275
Climate 850
Activity 850
CD 200
HID 500
-------------------------
MSRP Total $43220 (this was Jan of 01, right after launch of the 3.0i)

I think the deal was $41.2k plus T&L.
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  #32  
Old 07-12-2004, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Kaz
The x3 does admittedly have far more cargo room. Passenger room isn't that different, though it's differently configured.
That's it for me. Plopping crap in the back and driving on a beach.
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  #33  
Old 07-12-2004, 01:58 PM
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The X5 holds baby/carseats better - and I have two of those in the back.
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  #34  
Old 07-12-2004, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emission
The X5 holds baby/carseats better - and I have two of those in the back.
So do I (err, so does she).
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  #35  
Old 07-13-2004, 03:43 PM
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Here are a few pics I snapped quickly. I'll post some better ones when it stops raining and I can clean it up a bit.
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  #36  
Old 07-14-2004, 06:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asnpcwiz
And harplayr, after have driven both cars the X3 and X5 right after each other, IMHO, the X5 is a better drive. Although I haven't driven the X3 with Servotronic steering, I think the X5 has a better feel over all. A feel that suits me better.
That just goes to show you what I've been saying. X3 vs. X5 is purely subjective. I also took a spin in the X5 and many other SUV's out there before buying the X3. In my opinion the X3 had much better handling than the X5 and the others I tested. It felt the closest to the 325 that I was trading in. The X5 had a more "refined" ride and was smoother, but I felt that it had more lean, less road feel, and wouldn't grip and corner as well. To me the X3 had the superior ride, to you the X5 did. Neither one of us is wrong; itís just a matter of taste. Bottom line is that we both got what we wanted, and seem to be happy with our respective choices. We both won.
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  #37  
Old 07-14-2004, 02:31 PM
Bimmer me up Bimmer me up is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SARAFIL
Here are a few pics I snapped quickly. I'll post some better ones when it stops raining and I can clean it up a bit.
Very nice ride. Enjoy. I love the X3, but then, I love all Bimmers.

I just took delivery on X5 3.0i w/ Prem, auto, PDC, Rear Clim ó hot and humid in Louisiana.

After 4 years, I'm glad to be back in a BMW!

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  #38  
Old 07-18-2004, 03:13 PM
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  #39  
Old 07-18-2004, 03:14 PM
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A few more...
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  #40  
Old 08-12-2004, 07:41 AM
Northern Song Northern Song is offline
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I noticed the bias in the two photos immediately. For a better comparison, here's an X3 interior along the lines of what you're talking about. It's probably not up to the X5, but it's certainly no disgrace.

http://www.germancarfans.com/photos....lar/bmw/1.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbelk
The pictures shown as a "comparison" are pretty well biased towards the X5, too. The X3 pictured has gray leather with the metallic trim on a gray background with poor lighting, whereas the X5 has nice, sumptuous beige leather and the nice light-wood trim, with good lighting. Given those two images, it's obvious that the X5 interior would look nicer. Replace the X3 pic with one that has wood trim and a rich leather color (like the Terra Cotta, or Sand Beige), and the differences will become much less pronounced and more representative of what one would expect to see in two cars that are in different "strata" of the BMW food-chain.
One question I have for people is related to comparison pricing. I see a lot of comparison between the pricing of the X3 v. X5 relative to what you get. As a 3 series driver, my perspective is more the price comparison between the X3 and my current 325xi. With the same options (premium, leather, cold weather, automatic), the pricing is very close and the extra space in the X3 and the X drive justify the additional cost. Is my logic flawed?
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  #41  
Old 08-12-2004, 07:50 AM
LeucX3 LeucX3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern Song
One question I have for people is related to comparison pricing. I see a lot of comparison between the pricing of the X3 v. X5 relative to what you get. As a 3 series driver, my perspective is more the price comparison between the X3 and my current 325xi. With the same options (premium, leather, cold weather, automatic), the pricing is very close and the extra space in the X3 and the X drive justify the additional cost. Is my logic flawed?
I would say yes, but there are some people who prefer the wagon over the X3.
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  #42  
Old 08-12-2004, 07:54 AM
Northern Song Northern Song is offline
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I understand that and I like the wagon. The problem for me is that I have a rear-facing infant seat in the back. With the 325, I need to push the front seat so far forward that it is almost unusable. I would have the same problem in the wagon. The X3 is still a little tight, but at least functional.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LeucX3
I would say yes, but there are some people who prefer the wagon over the X3.
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  #43  
Old 08-12-2004, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SARAFIL
We also got sticker shock when some normally-equipped X3 2.5's showed up with window stickers near $40,000. We knew the prices, but didn't think they'd get that expensive with only things like Leather, Auto, Premium, and Cold Weather Packages.

Explains why many of the X3 2.5s we saw on dealer lots had Steptronic and metalic paint as the only options. One local dealer had about a dozen with Black Sensatec.

They really wanted us to take one home
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  #44  
Old 08-12-2004, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern Song
I noticed the bias in the two photos immediately. For a better comparison, here's an X3 interior along the lines of what you're talking about. It's probably not up to the X5, but it's certainly no disgrace.

http://www.germancarfans.com/photos....lar/bmw/1.html



One question I have for people is related to comparison pricing. I see a lot of comparison between the pricing of the X3 v. X5 relative to what you get. As a 3 series driver, my perspective is more the price comparison between the X3 and my current 325xi. With the same options (premium, leather, cold weather, automatic), the pricing is very close and the extra space in the X3 and the X drive justify the additional cost. Is my logic flawed?
I think you are right on the money with this observation... Take the 325xi, equip an X3 with similar options, add a little bump for new model and X-drive, and there is your pricing. I really doubt the X5 pricing had anything to do with it. None of you were really expecting it to be the same price or less than a 3-series, were you?

Our '03 325i MSRP was $38,145... They have '04 X3 2.5s on the lot at my dealer that MSRP for $39K-$40K that are similarly equipped.. Sure, you can add a lot of crap to jack up the price to $45K (PDC? folding mirrors? It isn't a Peterbilt, for chrissakes), but you won't see one on the lot that way. Like all BMWs, it is expensive, but pretty much as cheap as BMW can make it... I wouldn't tout it as a 'value' player, but it is nearly as cheap as the 3-series.

regards,
kyfdx
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  #45  
Old 08-13-2004, 07:47 AM
LeucX3 LeucX3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyfdx
Our '03 325i MSRP was $38,145... They have '04 X3 2.5s on the lot at my dealer that MSRP for $39K-$40K that are similarly equipped.. Sure, you can add a lot of crap to jack up the price to $45K (PDC? folding mirrors? It isn't a Peterbilt, for chrissakes), but you won't see one on the lot that way. Like all BMWs, it is expensive, but pretty much as cheap as BMW can make it... I wouldn't tout it as a 'value' player, but it is nearly as cheap as the 3-series.

regards,
kyfdx
I dunno...there were a lot of $40-42K X3 2.5s on my dealer's lot when i got mine. Yes, it doesn't make sense and that's when the trunk money or incentives or whatever they want to call them came about.
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  #46  
Old 08-13-2004, 08:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeucX3
I dunno...there were a lot of $40-42K X3 2.5s on my dealer's lot when i got mine. Yes, it doesn't make sense and that's when the trunk money or incentives or whatever they want to call them came about.
Interesting to note that BMW currently has no incentives on the X3 (but they go have very good lease programs and financing), but we've managed to virtually sell out of them in the past month or so. This is very interesting because when the car was released, we were flooded with them, and everyone predicted it would flop.

I also think the shortage of 325xi's (we've been sold out for over two months) has helped us to sell the X3 2.5. We've definately seen alot of people come in on the 325xi, and go home thinking about the X3 2.5 instead.

And while BMW has been hush-hush on releasing MY05 info for the X3, the preliminary info I have seen indicates that BMW is working hard to address the bottom line cost and to make the "typically equipped" vehicle a better value. Stay tuned for updates, I'll post them as I get them.
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