2008 BMW X3 Performance

8.0
Performance

The 2008 BMW X3 offers a single performance profile that combines soft-roading with good on-road handling, according to reviews from around the Web.

The standard engine in the BMW X3 is a 3.0-liter inline-six engine that puts out 260 horsepower, says Edmunds. It also provides 225 pound-feet of torque. MSN Autos calls the engine "venerable" and says it puts out "more immediate engine response" with a series of upgrades. Cars.com calls it "potent,." Motor Trend reports the engine has strong low-end torque, and capable of pushing the X3 to 60 mph in as little as 6.9 seconds.

The 2008 BMW X3 brings typical German handling flair to its off-road-capable package.

BMW offers a choice of a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission. The automatic met with complaints from some but MSN Autos calls it responsive and likes its "manual-shift feature", while it points out the automatic is a no-cost option.

"Power is sent to all four wheels through an all-wheel-drive system" on this BMW 2008 model, says Edmunds. The new xDrive system is closely teamed with the X3's traction and stability control. Motor Trend says it lets the driver choose more "wheelslip before the electronics kick in." MSN Autos simply says, "the all-wheel-drive system optimizes traction and enhances handling on slippery and dry roads."

When it comes to fuel economy, the automatic BMW 2008 model gets 17 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. The manual version of the BMW X3 only gets 1 mpg less than the automatic, says Edmunds.

On a positive note, the "X3 readily swallows mile after mile of high-speed highway," says MyRide.com, adding it "shines on dusty, gravel-strewn back roads." MSN Autos reports "the nicely sized X3 has good maneuverability in tight parking situations and is among the sharpest-handling SUVs, with little body lean when snaking through curves." Many reviewers found the X3's steering somewhat heavy, but like Edmunds says, "the ultra-communicative and precise steering is simply the best." Cars.com refers to the X3's "top-notch road manners" and asserts it has "more road feel than many cars."

The 2008 BMW X3's "brakes are strong and resistant to fade," says Edmunds, while Cars.com finds "the X3's brakes are surefooted at their limits, though the pedal is on the grabby side."

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