BMW has revealed the facelifted versions of the related third-generation X3 wagon and second-generation X4 ‘coupe’, with the mid-size SUVs due in Australian showrooms in the fourth quarter of this year with a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) surprise.
If the new X3 looks familiar, that’s because it was leaked last month, and given its obvious similarities with the X4, there isn’t a whole lot to be surprised about here.
For starters, the mid-size SUVs feature a new version of BMW’s signature kidney grille, which is not only larger and squarer than before, but also linked by a section of colour-matched trim, as per the first-generation M2 Competition Coupe.
Read more about the BMW X3 and X4
Then there’s the reshaped adaptive LED headlights (laser versions of which are now optional), which are similar to that of the second-generation 4 Series Coupe, while fresh takes on the variant-specific front bumpers are also on hand.
Around the side, new sets of alloy wheels feature, while the X3’s rear end is punctuated by properly 3D LED tail-lights, which are set to be shared with the upcoming second-generation 2 Series Coupe. And the rear bumpers for both models have been tweaked slightly.
Inside, we see something we haven’t seen before, with the X3 and X4 getting a 10.25- or 12.3-inch central touchscreen and digital instrument cluster powered by BMW’s iDrive 7 multimedia system, which supports wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
This ‘floating’ item crowns both model’s redesigned centre stacks and consoles, which are more or less lifted from the seventh-generation 3 Series mid-size car.
Advanced driver-assist systems for the X3 and X4 have been expanded, with the autonomous emergency braking (AEB) system now coming with intersection assist, while lane-keep/steering assist has added emergency functionality. Reversing assist is also new.
Locally, the X3 and X4 will continue with a 135kW/300Nm (20i) or 185kW/350Nm (30i) 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine, while a 285kW/500Nm 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder unit (M40i) will also stay on.
Another petrol engine option, a 3.0-litre twin-turbo inline six-cylinder unit (M Competition), will also return with the same power but 50Nm more torque, at 375kW/650Nm, helping to reduce the flagships zero-to-100km/h sprint times to 3.8 seconds (-0.3s).
Meanwhile, the X3 goes it alone with two carryover turbo-diesel engine options, a 140kW/400Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder (20d) and a 195kW/620Nm 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder (30d).
Critically, the X3 is also set to become available with a PHEV variant for the first time in Australia. Called 30e, it develops 215kW/420Nm by combining the 20i’s engine with an electric motor, and delivers 42-50km of WLTP electric-only range from a 12.0kWh battery.
Aside from the rear-wheel-drive X3 20i, all variants of the Audi Q5, Volvo XC60, Mercedes-Benz GLC and Lexus NX rivals use BMW's xDrive all-wheel-drive system, with an eight-speed torque-converter automatic transmission responsible for swapping gears.