While it was leaked on the internet days before it was supposed to, thanks to BMW's over-eager Hong Kong outpost, we now know the official details of the German brand's all-new mid-size SUV. The Bavarian's signature kidney grille at the front will be sided by a pair of sharper LED headlights.
There are new suspension components, too, and it's no larger than the outgoing auto.
Looking at the pictures, it seems that the 3 Generation X3 has evolved from its predecessor in terms of its exterior design language. Like other new BMW's, it also gets a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot with support for up to 10 devices. Fortunately for BMW, the 3-Series has been the gold standard in a category for the better part of four decades.
Inside the 2018 X3 features a Human Machine Interface. Physical buttons for the heating and air-conditioning rest lower down, while BMW's iDrive rotary controller is present and correct. The interior has aluminum trim, and there are M Sport seats with black leather and blue contrast stitching. This approach has worked to great effect in the latest 5 Series and we can only assume the new X3 will feel similarly impressive to sit in.
So what's new with the X3? Comfort levels are further elevated by a host of new equipment options like three-zone automatic climate control, the Ambient Air package, active seat ventilation, the cargo function of the standard 40:20:40 split/folding rear seat backrests and the panoramic glass roof that brings extra airiness to the interior and further enhances perceived quality.
There are, naturally, numerous options you can add to the X3. BMW says that the cabin is more functional than before, with more stowage space for personal items.
Moreover, a full complement of safety and driver assistance systems - such as six airbags, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and rear cross-traffic alert - will be available. An optional head-up display is 75 percent larger than the outgoing version.
The M makeover is completed by a sports exhaust, sports suspension, a variable steering ratio and an eight-speed automatic gearbox with launch control.
Not only that, the all-new model also maintains the old car's 50 - 50 weight distribution, as well as offering an all-new performance-orientated M40i model. Spring for the beefier M40i, and length and width increase by 0.2-and 0.3-inches, respectively.
The big news is the introduction of the new X3 M40i, which marks the introduction of the first M performance model for the X3 lineup. That makes it the most powerful X3 ever-at least, until the V8-powered X3 M arrives. Most buyers are likely to choose the xDrive20d, which will leave company-car customers liable for a Benefit-in-Kind rate of 28%.
Pricing for the 2018 BMW X3 hasn't yet been announced and fuel economy figures aren't yet available.