What's the news?
BMW Ireland will put the all-new X3 SUV on sale on November 11 this year, with an expected starting price of €58,580 for the most affordable 20d SE model.
The new X3 sticks closely to the size and silhouette of the outgoing car, but it does get a new face, inspired by the styling of the smaller BMW X1. It's also lighter than before (by 55kg) and has a 50mm longer wheelbase, to the benefit of cabin space. The boot holds a useful 550 litres, too.
That cabin gets the new 10-inch iDrive touchscreen with its tile menu layout and BMW Connected services. Those range from a SIM card that can ring the emergency services in the event of an accident to on-board Microsoft Office 365 and voice control for your emails.
Other tech highlights include the touch-screen ignition key from the BMW 5 Series and 7 Series, a new head-up display and more autonomous safety features including a traffic jam assistant, active cruise control and lane-keeping steering.
On the engine front, the carried over 190hp 2.0-litre diesel is expected to be the best seller (its emissions start from 132g/km and that's with standard xDrive four-wheel drive), but there will, shortly, be an X3 20i turbocharged petrol model, too, the first mainstream petrol-fuelled X3 in a generation.
As well as the 265hp 3.0-litre straight-six diesel, there will be a new sporty flagship for the X3 range, the M40i, which uses a 360hp six-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine to produce a very rapid 4.8-second 0-100km/h time. That one will set you back €89k, without options.
BMW will also launch a plugin hybrid model and, by 2020, a fully electric BMW X3.