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In-depth reviews

BMW X3 review - MPG, CO2 and Running Costs

The BMW X3 isn’t a budget option, but running costs should be as good as rivals

BMW is a premium brand, and that means overall purchase and running costs for the X3 are going to be higher than crossovers with lower badge values. Comparisons to the rest of the premium sector shouldn’t throw up too many shocks though.

The same goes for fuel economy and emissions, which fall into the same ballpark as upmarket rivals. However, these are big, heavy vehicles, and it will be relatively easy for owners to return real world figures that look much less appealing than the official test results.

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Talking of which, the smallest 2.0-litre diesel returns a combined test result of up to 42.8mpg, with CO2 emissions of 133-136g/km depending on wheel size. The 3.0-litre diesel can eke out a test figure of 39.8mpg with 154-159g/km. The 2.0-litre petrol offers up to 35.3mpg with 154-157g/km, while the racy X3 M40i will theoretically manage up to 25.7mpg while producing up to 207g/km of CO2.

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The most powerful model in the range – the X3 M Competition – returns 26.9mpg on average and emits 239g/km.

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Many of these cars will be bought by companies for their employees – the Benefit-in-Kind tax brackets are 34 to 35 per cent for the 2.0-litre diesel and the maximum 37 per cent for 3.0-litre diesel models. The 2.0-litre petrol X3 gets a 34 to 35 per cent rating while the M40i will be taxed at top-rate 37 per cent.

While the X3 officially starts at around £39,000, most buyers will choose a model costing £40,000 or more. When this price is reached or breached, road tax will shoot up from £140 annually to £450 from years two to six of the X3's life – an additional total cost of £1,550.

Insurance groups

The BMW X3 insurance group ratings are similar to the outgoing model, which means the 2.0-litre petrol sets the ball rolling at group 28 (out of 50), while both the 3.0-litre diesel and the more powerful M40i attract the same group 40 rating. 

Depreciation

While the previous generation BMW X3 was subject to a fair amount of dealer discounting which had a knock-on effect on used prices, the latest model is likely to depreciate at a rate closer to the likes of the Audi Q5 or Land Rover Discovery Sport. Our experts predict it will retain between 48 and 54 per cent of its value after three years and 36,000 miles.

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Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    xDrive20i SE 5dr Step Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £39,710

Most Economical

  • Name
    xDrive 30e SE 5dr Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £46,660

Fastest

  • Name
    xDrive X3 M Competition 5dr Step Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £75,950
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