All-New BMW X3 PHEV Spied In The Wild For The First Time

Spy Shots / 2 Comments

The electric range will be one of the electrified SUV's most significant improvements.

BMW is already working hard to develop a new-generation X3 to take on the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class and Audi Q5. While the BMW X3 won't garner as much attention as the XM or iX, it remains a more important SUV than both as one of the brand's most popular vehicles globally.

We saw the first batch of spy shots of the next-gen X3 in June, and it hasn't taken long for our eagle-eyed photographers to capture a camo-wrapped version of the new X3 plug-in hybrid lurking around the streets of Munich, Germany. This is our first sighting of the X3 PHEV which should provide a perfect combination of power and efficiency, along with with a vastly superior all-electric range. Hopefully, it is a stepping stone to a new iX3 since the current all-electric iX3 isn't sold in the USA.

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Unsurprisingly, the perceptible visual changes relative to the regular X3 are minor. A sticker that reads "electrified vehicle" makes it obvious what this is, and we can also see that the normal X3's quad tailpipes are gone. Being a PHEV, the charging port on the front left fender is visible. Other than that, the new X3 PHEV also gets a broader grille, a new lower intake, and angled headlights that look similar to the ones on the new X1. It's more difficult to make out the design of the taillights. Overall, this is a compact SUV with balanced proportions, but we hope the finer details are exciting enough to keep BMW fans interested.

Details about what will power the new X3 PHEV are thin on the ground at this point. The previous X3 PHEV had a 2.0-liter turbo-four and an electric eDrive motor that made a combined 288 horsepower, and it was capable of 60 MPGe combined.

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Although BMW hasn't abandoned its classic 3.0-liter six-cylinder yet, we think the upcoming X3 PHEV will retain four-cylinder power, but perhaps its output will increase to around 300 hp in tandem with the electric motor. Our sources indicated that the X3 PHEV will actually have three different outputs, with the least powerful model sticking with rear-wheel drive.

With improved battery tech, the all-electric range is expected to improve vastly to more than 60 miles. For reference, the previous X3 PHEV could only travel for a mere 17 miles on electric power alone.

As spy shots of the next X3 PHEV have only just emerged and the 2023 X3 has only recently come out, we'll probably only start seeing official images of the new X3 PHEV later next year.

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