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

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Old 04-01-2013, 06:12 PM
Reel Job Reel Job is offline
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Location: West Kingston,Rhode Island
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: BMW X3 2007 3.0si
Towing a boat with X3

Just got back from a 750 mile trip towing a boat with the X3
About 3100 pounds total with the weight of trailer.
I was concerned about the ability, even though I recently installed the factory hitch, and the towing capacity is 3500 pounds, as we know.
The vehicle is a 2007 automatic with 58K miles.
It did terrific, the only issue was the economy while towing.
At 70-73 mph without the trailer on the highway in cruise I was getting 25 mpg.
Returning at 60-65 mph tops, the vehicle did outstanding, however my milage was 13.4 mpg tops, just about cut in half.
I would of thought it would have done better than that, highway was mostly level.
North Carolina - New England.
Anyone have any similiar experiences?
Reel Job
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:03 PM
rmerkushen rmerkushen is offline
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Location: Forked River NJ
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 63
Mein Auto: E90 330i, E83 X3si
I had towed boats up to 10k with gas and diesel trucks, and gas engine fule consumption always seem to suffer with increased load. My Titan was getting 12-14 mpg highway, while towing 9500lbs load it would drop to 7-8. I would not make a habbit of towing with your X3. Increase in fuel consumption means excessive load on the engine, which translates into many harmful things to your engine. Wear and Tear, and most important one being carbon build up. While consuming that twice the fuel, there is lots of build up. I would run some seafoam through it just to remove any carbon build up. In gas outboard engines, decarbing is very common and has to be done every 100 hours.

Diesel engine fuel consumption is less affected by heavy loads, making them first choice for tow trucks or heavy boats. I am not saying you need a diesel by any means, 3500lbs is feather weight, but do get at least a 1/4 ton frame vehicle (Tacoma/Pathfinder would do just fine) to tow your boat around. X3 is not built for towing...
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:56 AM
camaroguy camaroguy is offline
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Location: WA
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 109
Mein Auto: '07 550i Sport, '07 X3
The affect on fuel economy doesn't seem to be out of control. Think about it, there is more than just the weight of the boat /trailer involved. You are also drastically changing the aerodynamics of the vehicle for the worse. That was probably the largest contributor when cruising on the highway.
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Old 04-03-2013, 11:48 AM
ShakyDog ShakyDog is offline
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Location: Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 77
Mein Auto: Z4 3.0i (sold the X3)
I tow my Polaris RZR S behind my 2008 X3 Auto a few times and yes the mileage goes almost in half. Here it is hilly and I use the manual shift to keep the trany from jumping in and out of 6-5-6-5... It only weighs about 1000 lbs and the trailer is maybe 1200 lbs.

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