Bmw X3 is the ‘Off-Roader of the Year 2011’

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 15, 2011

A few weeks ago, the second generation BMW X3 made its official market debut but already, it has been named the “Off-Roader of the Year” by the readers of the German Off Road magazine. Its predecessor had actually received the same award in 2006 and in 2007.

The BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupe was runner-up in the Crossover category while the new BMW X5 ranked third among the Luxury Off-Roaders. What these rewards prove is how much German customers like the BMW X models. In 1999, the first-generation of first generation X5 was launched. It was with this vehicle that the company entered the Sports Activity Vehicle segment.

The launch of both the first BMW X3 and the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system came shortly afterwards. This system offered electronically controlled drive distribution, which made for improved traction and stability on slippery surfaces as well as offered superior dynamics on the road, creating a unique rendition of hallmark BMW driving performance.

In spring 2011, the engine portfolio consisted of two petrol and two diesel engines that delivered from 184 hp to 306 hp. Depending on the engine choice, the new X3 was offered with an eight-speed automatic transmission either as standard or as an optional extra. All-new suspension technology offers improvements to agility and ride comfort compared with the predecessor. The magazine started the poll for the “Off-Roader of the Year” in 1982.

Ruggedness, agility, and elegance --- these are the words that best describe the design of the latest BMW X3. The bold presence of the BMW X3 is a result of the large headlight assembly and the forward-slanting BMW kidney grille that is combined with the front apron and the hood that has six contour lines which narrows down and converges at the kidney grill. Its round fog lamps meanwhile combine with the twin round headlights to give it a triangular light pattern, another feature of the BMW SAV design.

Highlighted with a chrome trim, the upper edge of its headlight assembly shows a design that is standard on many BMW models. The brand’s signature "Corona Rings" have once again been illuminated in order to serve as daytime running lights.

When the optional Xenon headlights are fitted in, the daytime running lights and the Corona Rings are brightened with white LEDs. Meanwhile the BMW X3’s profile has a feature that can be described as a rather unique interpretation of the standard design features of the BMW X.

As a BMW Sports Activity Vehicle, it has a robust character which is emphasized further by the short overhangs of the front and rear and the flared wheel arches. Helping highlight the profile’s dynamic appearance are the three characteristic lines. The BMW X3 has the expected upper contour which starts at the level of the door handle and then goes up at first to the front wheel arch area and then flows slowly to its rear.

There are also two extra lines that trail these contour lines just above its wheel arches. The rear also features horizontal lines which further underline its robust character. As a result of using expressively modeled surfaces and the precise lines, there is a light and shadow effect. While the taillights have been positioned farther outside, it continues to have the T-shape typical of the BMW X3. The LED lights bars on the other hand result in a unique BMW night-time design signature.

In terms of dimension, the new X3 is taller by 0.5 inch (12 mm) compared to the previous model. It is also longer by 3.36 inches (83 mm) and wider by 1.1 inches (28 mm). The new X3 even has a ground clearance taller by 0.5 inch (12 mm). The wheelbase measures 110.6 inches (2,810 mm), longer by 0.6 inch (15 mm) versus its predecessor. In terms of its interior, the X3 has a premium and modern feel with an intelligent functionality.

This is due to the use of high-grade materials, having a versatile spatial concept, and utilizing a three-dimensional surface design. Even the horizontal lines of its panel help highlight the width of its interior. Again as expected from the BMW, the cockpit has been designed to be driver-oriented and is underscored by the center console that is asymmetrically designed.

When the optional navigation system is installed, along with the fourth generation BMW iDrive, its Central Display is integrated seamlessly to the instrument panel. It has a high-resolution 8.8-inch trans-reflective screen, considered as the largest on-board monitor for its class. All throughout the interior, there are a number of cup holders, trays, and storage compartments.

Press Release

BMW X3 voted Off-Roader of the Year

Only weeks after its market launch it has already been hailed “Off-Roader of the Year”. The new BMW X3 has made an instant and lasting impression on fans of all-wheel-drive vehicles: readers of Germany’s Off Road magazine voted it their favourite in the “SUV” category. This accolade sees the new BMW X3 following in the tyre tracks of its predecessor model, which was voted “Off-Roader of the Year” twice in succession – in 2006 and 2007. The latest Off Road reader poll also conferred outstanding rankings on two other BMW X models: the BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupé was runner-up in the “Crossover” category while the new BMW X5 came third among the “Luxury Off-Roaders”.

This triple success for the family of BMW X models is further proof of just how attractive and popular a vehicle concept it is. Its triumphal career began in 1999 with the unveiling of the first-generation BMW X5, with which BMW called into being the Sports Activity Vehicle segment. This was soon followed by both the first BMW X3 and the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system. Its electronically controlled drive distribution not only made for surefooted traction and maximum stability on slippery surfaces, but superior dynamics on the road as well, creating a unique rendition of hallmark BMW driving pleasure. With the BMW X6 and the BMW X1, this concept found its way into further vehicle segments. Both models remain unrivalled in the competitive field of premium automobiles.

By contrast, the new BMW X3 joins a segment that is already inhabited by other premium carmakers as well. Thanks to its systematically honed qualities, however, the BMW X3 once again sets benchmarks within that category – a fact reflected in its being voted “Off-Roader of the Year”. The engines available for this Sports Activity Vehicle deliver superior performance and, thanks to BMW EfficientDynamics, exemplarily low fuel consumption and emission figures as well. In spring 2011 the engine portfolio comprises two petrol and two diesel engines with output ranging from 135 kW/184 hp to 225 kW/306 hp. Depending on the choice of engine, the new BMW X3 features an eight-speed automatic transmission either as standard or as an option. All-new suspension technology brings with it a palpable improvement in agility and ride comfort compared with the predecessor model.

With luggage capacity that can be extended from 550 to 1, 600 litres and a folding, 40 : 20 : 40-split rear seat backrest the new BMW X3 boasts the greatest available space and flexibility in its segment. It also comes with a choice of innovative equipment features, driver assistance systems and mobility services from BMW ConnectedDrive that is unique among the competition. As an example, the new BMW X3 is the only model in its class that has the option of a Head-Up Display and allows for in-car internet use.

The vote for “Off-Roader of the Year” ranks among the most important and traditional reader polls in Germany. Going back as far as 1982, readers of Off Road magazine have been invited annually to choose their favourite all-wheel-drive vehicles on the German car market. This year the selection was made from a line-up of 101 models in eight categories.

Topics: bmw, bmw x3, crossover, award

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