This is our first official peek at new BMW X3 ahead of its imminent debut

Published Apr 19, 2024


BMW has confirmed that it will pull the covers off its all-new X3 in a few weeks from now, and to whet the appetite the German carmaker has released some disguised prototype images.

The new X3 is currently undergoing final tuning of all chassis control and driver assistance systems at the company’s test centre in southern France.

X3 prototypes have also been spotted in South Africa recently, and in fact caused quite a stir in the Northern Cape town of Kuruman back in February - read more about that here.

The new X3 is a very important product for our country as it will be built in Rosslyn for local consumption and export following a R4.2 billion investment announced back in 2023. This will also see the Gauteng plant produce its first plug-in hybrid model.

Production volumes have yet to be announced but it’s worth noting that 57,432 examples of the current X3 were exported to more than 40 countries last year.

The replacement for the fully-electric BMW iX3 won’t be built in SA, for now at least, as it will move over to the brand’s “Neue Klasse” platform for EVs. The regular X3 and X3 PHEV models are expected to soldier on with the current “KLAR” architecture that also underpins the latest 3-Series.

It is likely to be larger than the current model, given that the latest X1 and X2 models have grown in size.

BMW has confirmed that the cabin will feature the latest iDrive system based on the BMW Operating System 9, including a “significantly expanded” selection of systems for driving and parking. Highlights include the Active Lane Change Assistant and the Parking and Manoeuvre Assistant, which allows owners to manoeuvre their vehicle out of tight spaces remotely using their phone.

Engine details remain under wraps for now, but the company has confirmed that it will be offered with a choice of “highly efficient” combustion engines in addition to the aforementioned plug-in hybrid drive.

On the chassis front, BMW speaks of a wider track and reduced lift at the rear axle, while body and chassis rigidity have also been improved. Chassis tweaks at both axles, including a 19 percent increase in the caster of the front wheels, are said to ensure “noticeably improved” directional stability.

And that’s about as much as we can tell you for now. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the full reveal.

IOL Motoring