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

View Poll Results: What year you like the most among all E83 X3?
2004 1 5.88%
2005 4 23.53%
2006 8 47.06%
2007 1 5.88%
2008 2 11.76%
2009 1 5.88%
2010 0 0%
Voters: 17. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 11-28-2012, 07:29 PM
reytran's Avatar
reytran reytran is offline
Nothing quite like a 6
Location: Santa Monica
 
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Mein Auto: 09' 650i Cabrio
What years among all the E83 model is the best?

I'm looking for a SUV for daily drive. The E83 is one of my choice so far so I just wanna know what years I should look into and why? Bang for the buck. Hopefully I will get good opinion on the year that I should get. Compare among all changes, worth buying, such as head, tail light, Engine, Transmission, bumper ... etc
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2012, 10:23 PM
x3brian x3brian is offline
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2009, because that's what I have.

In all seriousness it depends on what your looking for and price range. This is a terrific platform based on the excellent e46 so it is pretty robust. There are quite a few of us with high milage that have had minimal issues (mine is at 103k). This is by far the best car I ever have owned (I bought new).

Now here is the breakdown:

2007 to 2010 - $15k to $25k

Lci refresh was in 2007 with new n52 engine and 6 speed auto. Avoid 2007 and early 2008 as they had major tranny problems. This was fixed with an updated tranny module in later builds (mine has this) and it works great. Still HIGHLY recommend reading the auto trans sticky and knowing the issue if auto transmissions are your bag. That way you can take a long test drive knowing what to look for.

If you like 6 speed mt all years are golden.

I personally like the lci models best as most all have color matched bumpers and new led taillights.

2004-2006 -- $9k to $14k

Older m54 engine but you still have an oil dipstick. Excellent engine but has some common age related failure points that need to be monitored at this point in their life (ie cooling system, DISA, ccv).

Main complaint for 04 to 06 (especially 04) is rough suspension and ride. If you ask UncleJ he will say it is very true for the 06 as well. Best to take a long test drive on rough roads to make sure you like it. In addition there were a few things left out of the early 2004 (ie Bluetooth )

Also panorama sunroof is a common complaint on all years...especially pre lci. I don't hear much about this in newer models (I haven't had issues), but best to use sparingly.

Last edited by x3brian; 11-28-2012 at 10:32 PM.
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  #3  
Old 11-29-2012, 02:06 AM
fivepointnine fivepointnine is offline
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Mein Auto: BMW X3, Mercedes CLK500
Quote:
Originally Posted by x3brian View Post
2009, because that's what I have.

In all seriousness it depends on what your looking for and price range. This is a terrific platform based on the excellent e46 so it is pretty robust. There are quite a few of us with high milage that have had minimal issues (mine is at 103k). This is by far the best car I ever have owned (I bought new).

Now here is the breakdown:

2007 to 2010 - $15k to $25k

Lci refresh was in 2007 with new n52 engine and 6 speed auto. Avoid 2007 and early 2008 as they had major tranny problems. This was fixed with an updated tranny module in later builds (mine has this) and it works great. Still HIGHLY recommend reading the auto trans sticky and knowing the issue if auto transmissions are your bag. That way you can take a long test drive knowing what to look for.

If you like 6 speed mt all years are golden.

I personally like the lci models best as most all have color matched bumpers and new led taillights.

2004-2006 -- $9k to $14k

Older m54 engine but you still have an oil dipstick. Excellent engine but has some common age related failure points that need to be monitored at this point in their life (ie cooling system, DISA, ccv).

Main complaint for 04 to 06 (especially 04) is rough suspension and ride. If you ask UncleJ he will say it is very true for the 06 as well. Best to take a long test drive on rough roads to make sure you like it. In addition there were a few things left out of the early 2004 (ie Bluetooth )

Also panorama sunroof is a common complaint on all years...especially pre lci. I don't hear much about this in newer models (I haven't had issues), but best to use sparingly.
I wholeheartedly disagree about the rough ride. I have an 04 and it rides great, if I wanted a soft ride I would have bought a Caddy, not a BMW. I have never had sunroof issues either. I have had CCV, belt tensioner, intake boot VCG and front thrust arm issues though in the 25k miles I have put on it (83k total miles)

I would personally get an 06 or a 09'up that has a warranty.

I think your pricing is off, at least where I am. I have not seen any 07-newer for sale in my area (seattle) for under 20k, 06's are going for about 16-18 and 04 and 05 are going for around 13-15k ....2010's are still over 30k!
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  #4  
Old 11-29-2012, 02:12 AM
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reytran reytran is offline
Nothing quite like a 6
Location: Santa Monica
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 521
Mein Auto: 09' 650i Cabrio
Thanks all for the detail. IMO, the X3 looks good except the tail light. Still hard to like it, but looks really excellent overall. Do you guys know the average miles to rebuild/replace the tranny?

I think that's NorCal Price. Pretty cheap though. I checked in SoCal it's about 28k to get 09-10. However, 09 and 10 is not my choice due to, I'm willing to pay extra to get 11 for new design. My choice actually from 04 till 08 which lie under 20k.
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  #5  
Old 11-29-2012, 02:39 AM
fivepointnine fivepointnine is offline
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between 04 and 08 I would get an 06 personally, the earlier 5 speed trannys are pretty much bulletproof, you rarely hear of one failing. And unlike the E46 3 series the X3's do not seem to have the cooling system issues. (although it is still advised to replace the expansion tank/waterpump and thermostat around 100k) You should be able to find a really clean low mileage 06 X3 for 18k probably.

the taillights grow on you!
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  #6  
Old 11-29-2012, 05:51 AM
usaret usaret is offline
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'09 or '10. They are the last of the E83 run and have had most if not all of the problems of older models addressed.
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  #7  
Old 11-29-2012, 07:55 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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The rough ride over bad pavement is there -- some may not notice it or it may not bother them but the biggest mistake I made in '06 when I bought mine new was to not take it for a long test drive (with my wife) over nasty pavement - raised expansion jointed roads -- and potholed streets (we have lots of all that here). On smooth roads the thing is smooth as glass and performs as advertised. However, come the nasty bits and it will shake your fillings out and jump your wife's latte out of the pax side cup holder onto the lap of her cream colored chanel suit! I replaced the 18" OEM scorpions with Michelin Pilot Sport Plus tires and that did help a bit, but it is still a shaker and bouncer. If you are seriously thinking of getting one -- then be SURE to take a long test drive with your wife over some nasty road bits to see if it is a car you can live with. They are all very expensive to repair, unless you are a DIYer, but they don't break often -- however when they do, stand by! I would look at a Q5, EX35, XC60, and RX if I were buying now.
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  #8  
Old 11-29-2012, 02:49 PM
x3brian x3brian is offline
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UncleJ welcome to the party! I knew you would say that!


Quote:
Originally Posted by reytran View Post
Thanks all for the detail. IMO, the X3 looks good except the tail light. Still hard to like it, but looks really excellent overall. Do you guys know the average miles to rebuild/replace the tranny?

I think that's NorCal Price. Pretty cheap though. I checked in SoCal it's about 28k to get 09-10. However, 09 and 10 is not my choice due to, I'm willing to pay extra to get 11 for new design. My choice actually from 04 till 08 which lie under 20k.
I was basing prices off of what I have seen...keep in mind 2010s are extremely rare (less that 5000 imported to the states). In addition most 09s are coming out of warranty and all BMWs take a huge depreciation hit at that point. Most I have seen are around 50 to 60k miles and are in the low to mid 20s. Lower milage cars/CPO are still closer to 30k but I assumed that wasn't your market.

For your tranny question, a rebuilt unit is about $4k to $7k depending on who installs it. There are no rebuild kits that I am aware of because although this is a GM tranny it has very little in common with other GM tranny's.

IMHO an ounce of prevention helps here. I change fluid roughly ever 30k miles.....but you never truly know or can predict when an auto will fail. One guy might get 200k without changing fluid another might get 90k with 3 fluid changes. That is the randomness you have if you want an auto....any auto. If that's a fear search for a MT.

In my past life I got 300k on a gm 4l60e on a gmc pickup following 30k mile fluid changes. However that isn't the norm...autos are like a box of chocolate...you never know what your gonna get...

With that said....for the most part outside of those 2007 and early 2008 with tranny issues....we don't hear a lot of horror stories in tranny wear. The transfer case actuator is far more prone to failure.

Last edited by x3brian; 11-29-2012 at 04:19 PM.
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  #9  
Old 11-29-2012, 07:20 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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I'm partial to the pre-LCI X3s but I don't like the "half" aero kit on the standard 2006 models for the US. Something about the pairing of the M54 engine (for the US/Canada), gearboxes either MT or AT, and software and chassis electronics just seems "right". I don't like the softened standard suspension on the later models; NC has predominately good roads and hitting bumps at speed don't unnerve it.

Aside from the fuel consumption and COČ emissions, I don't have much to complain about my 2004.
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  #10  
Old 11-29-2012, 10:22 PM
x3brian x3brian is offline
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I will add I have ZERO complaints with my 09...best car and $50k I have ever spent. Plan on keeping this one for the long haul.
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