"Great Car, Lame CNET Review"4.0 starson by spongeworthy
Pros: Handling, styling, performance, safety
Cons: BMW Dealerships are populated by sleazy scum bags, MPG could be improved
Summary: I love my X3 but I hate my dealer. BMW used to be sold by dealers that understood what it meant to sell a high class, high quality product. Not anymore - BMW dealers are classless slime.
Anyway, back to the car. The X3 is one of the most unique vehicles on the road. It is an SUV that has the nimble handling of a high performance sports car. The X3 weighs about 4000lbs, but you would never no it driving it - it feels like a 3-series on the road.
Yes it is expensive, but it is actually a good value. I would recommend looking into leasing as the lease support BMW offers on this car is exceptional. I don't think there is another car on the road in the 40K price range that you can lease for 300-400/month, about the same as a Honda Pilot on a lease due to high BMW residuals and low interest rate BMW offers on the X3.
The NAV system on the BMW is not as good as some of Japanese brands, the data entry is a bit awkward and the screen is smaller than on the Acuras. The factory stereo is decent but leaves a bit to be desired particularly for on low end of the frequency spectrum (not enough bass).
MPG is OK for car of this size, but will likely improve by 10-15% when BMW adds the Valvotronic engines in mid-2006. I get about 18MPG with mixed city and highway(although often in traffic). These are my only two real complaints.
All in all, a great vehicle... As for CNET, stick to reviewing consumer electronics, leave car reviews to people who know something about cars.