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In-depth reviews

BMW iX3 SUV - Interior & comfort

It's an attractive BMW interior but there's little to make the iX3 stand out

Carbuyer Rating

4.0 out of 5

Owners Rating

4.0 out of 5

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Interior & comfort Rating

4.0 out of 5

Unlike the daring BMW i3 and i8 models that set out BMW's stall as a designer of forward-thinking green models, the iX3 is a much more conventional model that's also available with electric propulsion. This will make sense for many customers, while others may view it as a bit of a disappointment. 

BMW iX3 dashboard

If you've sat in a BMW X3, there's very little change here apart from some blue flashes of colour for the BMW badge and gearlever. The steering wheel with silver buttons are new, while a 10.25-inch infotainment display and 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster is carried over, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto that are easy to use, if lacking the desirability of the systems you find in a Tesla or Mercedes.

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Materials are of a high quality and the infotainment software is amongst the best in the business, but there aren't any novel features like trim made from recycled bottles or cork, as seen in many environmentally conscious models. The design of the dashboard, with its instrument binnacle and infotainment screen perched above the dashboard, hasn't changed much for over a decade, so it's starting to show its age when compared with rivals.

Materials are of a high quality and the infotainment software is amongst the best in the business, but there aren't any novel features like trim made from recycled bottles or cork, as seen in many environmentally conscious models. The design of the dashboard, with its instrument binnacle and infotainment screen perched above the dashboard, hasn't changed much for over a decade, so it's starting to show its age when compared with Tesla and Mercedes' interiors.

Equipment

The first versions of the iX3 were called Premier Edition and Premier Edition Pro but in August 2021 these were replaced with M Sport and M Sport Pro. There's a choice of four exterior colours, along with three choices of interior trim and upholstery. Standard kit impresses, and includes 19-inch aerodynamic alloy wheels, heated front sports seats and a panoramic sunroof.

M Sport Pro adds 20-inch alloy wheels, a Harman Kardon stereo, head-up display and BMW's Driving Assistant Professional package. It also brings technology that allows iPhone and Android smartphone owners to use their phone as a digital key and set corresponding driver profiles.

Technology

The iX3 comes with BMW LIve Cockpit Professional as standard, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This can be controlled using the touchscreen or an iDrive wheel on the centre console, which is arguably more comfortable to use while driving. iDrive's menus are logical and well presented, with sharp graphics. The digital instruments are also clear but there's not as much customisation as you'll find in an Audi e-tron. Owners can also interact with the iX3 remotely using a smartphone app, checking information like charging status and pre-heating or cooling the interior before a journey.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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