The new BMW X3

Yesterday, we brought you the first round of info surrounding the new BMW X3. In it were tantalizing details of a new high-output twin-turbo torque monster of a diesel. Unfortunately, but not unsurprisingly, that engine isn't coming over.

North America's new X3 3.0si gets a 3.0L inline six tuned to produce 260 horsepower and 225 lb-ft of torque. (Europe also got this new engine, but their version makes 272 horsepower. Go figure.) A six-speed manual is standard equipment, but Bimmer's 6-speed STEPTRONIC automatic is available at no additional cost. 0-60 comes in a respectable 6.9 seconds with the manual, and a smidge later if the auto is shifting for you. Most interestingly, despite giving up 12 horsepower to the European 3.0si, the North American X3 is faster to sixty regardless of  which transmission is used.

As with the European X3, Dynamic Stability Control is now standard equipment..

Exterior enhancements are the same as what we reported earlier: new front and rear fascias and LED tailights are the major updates. BMW North America also points out that the headlamps now incorporate the halo-like corona light rings, and that the headlight washers (part of the optional Cold Weather Package) now retract into the bumper.

Inside, new and improved interior materials up the quality and overall luxury, and a new steering wheel has been added to the mix (to these eyes, it looks almost exactly like the current one). North American customers also get a selection of available option packages. Full details are in the attached release.

All told, the revamped X3 is tougher outside, smoother inside, and has a little added snarl underhood. It should do just fine.

(Press release, photos after the jump)

[Source: BMW North America]
Photos:
The new BMW X3The new BMW X3The new BMW X3The new BMW X3The new BMW X3

Press Release:

ANNOUNCING THE 2007 BMW X3 3.0si SPORTS ACTIVITY VEHICLE   

 
The BMW X3 Receives Greater Performance, Enhanced Safety, Updated Styling, Interior Refinements and New Luxury Options for 2007.

Woodcliff Lake, NJ - June 27, 2006... Building on its reputation as an agile, fun to drive, attainable BMW Sports Activity Vehicle, the X3 receives a significant freshening for the 2007 model year. It begins, of course, with a performance upgrade. It also includes additional safety features, revamped exterior styling, an increase in the level of interior refinement as well as new luxury and performance oriented options. Reflecting its increase in performance, it also gets a new name - the BMW X3 3.0si. As a BMW SAV, it will again come standard with BMW's innovative xDrive all-wheel drive. The 2007 BMW X3 3.0si will arrive in U.S. showrooms early this fall.

A new engine and transmission choices offer even greater performance
The BMW X3 3.0si will be powered by the award-winning aluminum/magnesium 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine, featuring VALVETRONIC technology. In the X3 3.0si, this engine produces 260 hp at 6,600 rpm and 225 lb-ft of torque at 2,500 rpm. This represents an increase of 35 horsepower and 11 lb-ft of torque. True to its BMW heritage, the X3 3.0si will be offered with a six-speed manual as standard equipment. A new six-speed STEPTRONIC automatic transmission will be offered as a no cost option in place of the previous 5-speed. The performance and feel are both improved thanks to incredibly quick gear changes. The result is a significant reduction in acceleration times for both transmissions. With the six-speed manual, the X3 3.0si accelerates from 0 - 60 mph is 6.9 seconds, an improvement of 0.7 seconds over the previous X3 3.0i. With the new six-speed STEPTRONIC automatic, the X3 3.0si goes from 0 - 60 mph in 7.1 seconds, a 0.8 second improvement. In typical BMW fashion, this increase in performance does not come at the sacrifice of efficiency.

An enhanced Dynamic Stability Control system works in concert with standard xDrive all-wheel drive
The Dynamic Stability Control system in the 2007 X3 3.0si includes all of the latest safety enhancements. These include Brake Drying to improve emergency stopping capability in wet conditions, Brake Standby to give an edge in emergency braking, Start-off Assistant and Brake Fade Compensation.

The 2007 X3 3.0si becomes the first BMW SAV to include Dynamic Traction Control as part of DSC. At the touch of a button, DTC waits for a higher threshold of wheel-slip before engaging DSC functions. This helps when starting off on loose snow, for example. It also offers the driving enthusiast another dimension of driving joy.

In order to ensure a high degree of stability and traction under all conditions, the xDrive all-wheel drive system, DSC and the engine management system are networked via Integrated Chassis Management. Working together, the systems will react to a loss of traction at any wheel by first utilizing xDrive to move traction to the front or rear axle as appropriate. Then, if necessary, DSC will work to help stabilize the vehicle.

Styling enhancements inside and out distinguish the 2007 BMW X3 3.0si
The front styling of the X3 3.0si has been enhanced with a new front bumper that frames a new, slightly larger twin-kidney grill. The cleaner headlight assembly no longer includes the DOT amber reflector, which moves to the fender. The optional Xenon Adaptive Headlights now include the corona light rings. The headlight washers, which are included with the Cold Weather Package, now retract into the bumper. The new rear bumper is highlighted with chrome exhaust tips. The new taillight cluster includes horizontal LED taillights. Adaptive Brake Lights enable the distinctive new taillights to illuminate along with, and at the same intensity as the brake lights in an emergency stop. Newly styled 17-inch wheels are standard, with 18-inch wheels available as a stand-alone option.

The more highly refined interior is immediately apparent. The new dashboard material has a more luxurious grain. The dashboard now has wood trim to match the center console and door pulls. The door panels have been enhanced with solid door pockets and additional upholstery above the armrests. When leather upholstery is ordered, the upholstery on the door panels includes stitching for an added premium luxury detail. The standard multi-function steering wheel is a new three-spoke design. Audiophiles will appreciate the new standard auxiliary input jack located on the back of the center console. For added comfort, 16-way comfort seats are available as an option. These include power headrest adjustment and a two-piece adjustable backrest.

2007 X3 enhancements continue with the packages
The content of the popular Premium Package has been improved to include a compass in the rearview mirror, a Universal Garage Door Opener and power-folding auto-dimming exterior mirrors. BMW Assist now includes four years of service. The Cold Weather Package adds heated rear seats to the heated front seats, headlight washers and ski-bag. A heated steering remains a stand-alone option. For the driving enthusiast, the Sport Package content remains the same. For those who want the ultimate in handling and responsiveness, the optional upgrade now includes mixed-size 19-inch wheels with performance tires.

The styling updates to the 2007 BMW X3 3.0si make this Sports Activity Vehicle even more elegant and comfortable while the performance enhancements, in true BMW tradition, ensure that it remains the vehicle of choice for the driving enthusiast.