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2011 BMW X3 – Click above for high-res image gallery

We're expecting the 2011 BMW X3 to debut sometime this year and judging by this latest crop of spy shots out of Munich, Bimmer's mid-level 'ute should be ready for prime-time when the Paris Motor Show rolls around this Fall.

Although the prototype appears slightly larger than the current model, the changes will be largely cosmetic, particularly up front, where the outgoing X3's plebeian proboscis has been dispatched in favor of BMW's new upright fascia. The headlamps appear to have grown in size and we're particularly digging the sculpted bumper, with its larger lower grille, more dramatic lip and angular air intakes.

The styling appears more standard on the sides and out back, although BMW is sure to redesign the D-pillar and fit new LED taillamps inspired by the rest of the range.

Naturally, the 2011 X3 will feature BMW's 3.0-liter six-cylinder powerplants – either naturally aspirated or turbocharged – with a handful of diesel mills available to our friends abroad. However, don't be surprised to hear about some kind of four-cylinder fitted to the X3 after its initial launch, and here's hoping that the 335d and X5 xDrive35d's impressive oilburner finds its way under the hood of the X3 in the U.S. in short order.

[Source: CarPix]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      X3 is quite a bit smaller than the X5, there's very little room for the X1 to fit in, and it'll steal sales from the X1. Bad business planning on BMW's part IMO
        • 5 Years Ago
        I heard somewhere that the X1 is only going to be about 4 inches taller and longer than a 1-series and have about the same cargo room as a VW GTI -- which is a LOT smaller than the X3
      • 5 Years Ago
      A 4-cyl diesel for the US version would probably due pretty well given the torque and the fuel economy. 320d-ish...
      • 5 Years Ago
      That peace sign looks like something else....
        • 5 Years Ago
        Looks meh, not so bad... but wow no projector headlights? Doesn't the X1 have projectors?
        • 5 Years Ago
        He must have not liked his picture being taken. When I looked at the picture thats the first thing I saw. It draws you in.
      • 5 Years Ago
      And people talk about Ford having too many overlapping crossovers...
      • 5 Years Ago
      "...However, don't be surprised to hear about some kind of four-cylinder fitted to the X3 after it's initial launch..."

      it's = contraction of _it_ and _is_
      its = possessive

      Sorry to be so anal.
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is awesome. It is a work of art. I'm glad BMW listened to people who said it was ugly, had a harsh ride, and had cheap materials inside.

      They thought it over and produced this brilliant response. I have the 05 X3 ...when they still had the black bumpers. I actully think it looks sportier than the 2010 model. In effort to get rid of the black bumpers that people considered cheap looking they made the car look bulky and unsporty. This is a fix since they brilliantly have that black strip edging upwards so the back doesn't seem too large and bulky. This is more sporty.

      I am pleased with the front. I hate the new 3 series front with that fat colored strip grabbing attention away from the kidney grills. I was afraid they would copy it. Nope.

      I am so thrilled with the looks of the car that I hope we can oder it without the roof rails like this model has. Maybe that adds some sleekness to it. I ave never used my rails.

      Now all they need to do is come out with a new color...a new shiny silver. The titanium silver is a lot more boring looking in real life. I might go space gray this time. Make it shiny BMW.

      Again...brilliant. Now I can finally admit my car is a little ugly...lol
      • 5 Years Ago
      This had better be a very comprehensive refresh--either that, or BMW better have the all-new BMW X3 ready for release in the near future. It's painfully evident that BMW has really let the current X3 fall behind the competition (GLK, Q5, XC60).
        • 5 Years Ago
        Looks all new to me. And definitely prettier than the current X3.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks a lot better than the current one, seems to mirror the X5's styling. Too bad it wasn't a year earlier or I might seriously have considered it instead of the Q5 I ended up buying. No idea why BMW has given Audi such a long time to dominate the compact CUV category before launching this refresh.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The current X3 is easily one of the ugliest vehicles in it's class... this update makes it look a lot more like the X5 which is actually decent looking.

      Still way too many similar sized and similar focused vehicles from BMW.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm confused. Aren't the X1 and the X3 close to the same size? And they can't be that much smaller than the X5, right?

      Seems like BMW is stacking things pretty tightly.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I've driven the X1 - it's much smaller and lower than the outgoing X3. It's nice, but really a compact car, with a slightly higher seating position than the 1 series. More suited for the lady driver... I ended up replacing my X3 with... another X3, fully loaded.

        My opinion: X3 is goldilocks size - not too small, not too big, just right. Useful small family car. Good loading space. Corners better than many cars, handles the winter weather. Some people don't dig the looks, or say it is outclassed by newer competitors, but the others don't drive or feel like BMWs. With a diesel engine, it's got good mid-range punch, but friendly enough on the environment. It doesn't attract the same ire that the big SUVs do either, which is a good thing.

        Looking forward to seeing what the new X3 will look like. I had understood they were lowering the roof line, and slanting the back a little more, which I'm personally not in favor of. Squarish behind the c-pillar to fit more stuff in works better for me.

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