Bassoul Heneine sal dealers of BMW in Lebanon offered me the BMW X3 for a test drive during a weekend. I was curious to know why people loved the BMW X3 so much. No need to talk about the exterior design. An attractive vehicle for sure.
The BMW X3 (F25) I was test driving represents the second generation of the model that debuted in 2011; and it premiered in September 2003 at the Frankfurt Auto Show. It is available in straight 6 cylinder and 4 cylinder petrol engine. It is also equipped with BMW’s X-Drive all-wheel drive system. If you are a fan of M power, BMW X3 has increased dynamics and is more compelling with the M package.
This review is going to be a little bit different from the reviews you find online. I am reviewing the car from a lady’s perspective. It is not that I don’t care about the car dynamics, I do, and A LOT! But there are plenty of reviews about car performance and I thought it would be interesting to review it from a different perspective. This review is more about the practicality of the car when a lady is driving a car on the Lebanese roads.
First thing I noticed after driving away from Bassoul Heneine premises in Sed El Bauchrieh was the Auto Start/Stop function. For the first time ever, BMW has combined the Auto Start/Stop function with an automatic transmission. The principle is simple: if the engine is not running, it cannot consume fuel. The Auto Start Stop function turns off the engine whenever it is not needed. In a traffic jam or in stop-and-go traffic, simply putting your BMW into neutral and taking your foot from the brake will activate the function. “Start Stop” on the Info Display signals that the engine has been turned off. The Auto Start Stop function automatically switches off the engine when the car is at a standstill and in neutral, then restarts it as soon as the driver removes his foot from the brake pedal, it helps reduce both fuel consumption and emissions. Furthermore, the system also recognises the difference between a temporary stop and the end of the trip. It will not restart the engine if driver’s seatbelt is undone, or if the door or bonnet is open. This function was a little bit annoying at first, especially in traffic, as you feel the car engine stopping, but I got used to it later on. You can always disable it if you want.
The ride was smooth very comfortable on bumpy roads (basically most of the roads in Lebanon), it was also very comfortable on the inside. Every feature was handy, and made easy with the Owner’s Handbook in the vehicle.
I connected my phone very easily, enjoyed my music, bluetooth phone calls were very easy with the ConnectedDrive.
Let’s move now to the serious stuff.
The first thing a lady notices when stepping in a car, is how easy it is to enter when wearing a tight skirt. I was wearing one, of course, and I stepped in very easily, without even having to hold my skirt. Very practical! No need for a footboard, it has the perfect height for ease of entry, there is no climb up like a full size SUV. The ground clearance of a BMW X3 is 8.3″.
The interior of the car is very efficient, handy and spacious! Even if the BMW X3 is not a full size SUV, first thing you notice when entering is how spacious it is, there is enough room to move especially when wearing high heels, the leg room makes it a comfortable drive. Look at the cup holder, how well fit it is. If by any chance it happens that you hit hard on the brakes, there won’t be any spilling. This is a very important detail especially while driving behind taxis in Lebanon.
The leather-wrapped steering wheel allows a great handling of the car. The leather seats make the seating very comfortable and smooth while sliding in with a skirt on. the 8.8 inch display shows clearly all messages. It has 8 speed automatic transmission steptronic system shifts gears so easily and smoothly that you can’t feel the shift.
The USB interface is just amazing.
In brief, the BMW X3 is the perfect ride for a lady. It is high enough to avoid the floods on the Lebanese roads. It is also good on bumpy roads. Even with the smallest engine, the X3 shows great performance on the way to the mountains.
The new X3 economizes on fuel consumption. A very practical car, it is a relatively small vehicle that can be parked in small spaces. Light, comfortable, has a wide interior, and can get you around the traffic in Lebanon. The sensors and screen are of great help in this case.
Here is some information about the first feature a lady looks at when buying a new car. I had a quick survey and the answers came as follows:
– Exterior design (First impression when I see the car, it sure has to be a WOW)
– The appearance
– Safety rating, engine, horsepower/size, sound/hands free system
- How easy it would be to get in and out of the car in a tight business dress suit and high heels
– Quality of the parts and their availability and price in local market
– The size (very critical in the case of Lebanon especially when looking for a car)
- Fuel economy
I would like to thank all those who answered the survey.
For those who are curious about the fuel consumption technical information here are some more details for you:
Fuel consumption / CO2 emissions
Combined fuel consumption: 7.4 to 12.5 l/100 km
Urban fuel consumption: 8.7 to 17.5 l/100 km
Extra-urban fuel consumption: 6.7 to 9.6 l/100 km
Combined CO2 emissions: 195 to 292 g/km
Further information about the official fuel consumption and the official specific CO₂ emissions for new passenger automobiles can be found in the “New Passenger Vehicle Fuel Consumption and CO₂ Emission Guidelines”, which are available free of charge at all sales outlets and from DAT Deutsche Automobil Treuhand GmbH, Hellmuth-Hirth-Str. 1, 73760 Ostfildern, Germany. (BMW Lebanon)
- Photos are taken from BMW official website and by the author of the blog.
What do you think of the BMW X3?