The BMW X3 is BMW's Land Rover Freelander rival, and is a compact 4x4 aimed at families who want the practicality and security of an off-roader in a compact, easy-to-drive package. It's available with a six-cylinder diesel engine, whilst those wanting more power can choose the petrol twin-turbo V8. Inspired by the larger BMW X5, it's capable on and off-road thanks to BMW's xDrive four-wheel-drive system.


£33,795 - £45,895
5 Doors
4 / 5
  • Fun to drive
  • Smooth 2.0-litre diesel engine
  • Spacious and well made interior
  • Options are expensive
  • Dashboard is a bit dated
  • Transmission tunnel eats into legroom

The BMW X3 is an upmarket mid-size SUV with seating for five passengers and a large boot. It boasts excellent road-holding from its sophisticated four-wheel-drive system and comes with a choice of three efficient diesel engines, in either SE or M Sport trim. The 3.0-litre versions are fast yet relatively efficient, but its the 2.0-litre diesels that are our pick.