I thought it high time I put finger to touchpad, and gave anyone who chooses to read, my thoughts on the LCI 3.0d X3. This thread will be updated as we plan to keep her for many years. For those that don’t know me, this is my 5th BMW in a row, and something I can’t seeing changing in the future. I enjoy the marque and it’s blend of style & functionality. After years with an E39 SE 5 series, and then the E60 Msport, I fancied a change. My kids and wife suggested another 5 series, but the thought didn’t excite me, not due to the cars, but the fact I had stepped out of one 5 series and into another a couple of times , so an SUV it was. The X5 was just too big for driving and parking in Central London, and we didn't need the extra space afforded by the bigger SUV. Running costs and fuel consumption were also a factor in our decision. Having sold the 530d in August of 2015, I stayed car-less until January 2016 when this vehicle came up for sale. Build: MY Oct 2014 (first of the Life Cycle Impulse) First registered “Y” to BMW UK with only 3500 miles 5AC/522/524 Adaptive (Xenon) Headlights with power washers 5A1 LED fog lights Extended Storage Sun Protection Glazing 563 Interior/Exterior lights package Professional Media Powered Tailgate operation DAB Heated seats (front) Black Leather with White stitching 8 Speed automatic with flappy paddles What really made my mind up about the car , was BMW Tring willing to throw in a 5 year maintenance pack (at £670 + £900 discount on advertised price), as I would effectively be the first owner outside of BMW. Always more attracted to the M Sport models of any BMW I’ve owned and this one in Saphire Black , with piano black facia certainly did it for me. I was well aware of the upcoming struggle that Diesel owners were facing, and opted to increase my budget and buy a Euro 6 specification.The ride is firm, but preferred over the more pliable SE suspension. It makes very flat cornering in fast wide corners, and feels very car like. So what’s it been like to own and drive? BRILLIANT It has the raw power to make overtaking a breeze, takes our family of 4 adults (both kids are now in their 20's) with ease, and enough room (just), for our overnight bags and their multitude of gadgets. The biggest surprise has been the way it’s become the “go to” vehicle for everyone, even though 2 other cars are at our disposal. My wife’s C Class Merc is only used for work and food shopping, and our son always prefers riding shotgun in the X3 over his Golf. It's practical, and to give an idea of what it can do .... we have carried … · 6ft snooker table · Washing machine · enough wood to make a log cabin · 3ft x 2ft footstool (DFS wanted £50 delivery fee) · Road bike without removing the wheels (I cycle with others frequently, when away from home) The high driving position took me a couple of weeks to a adjust to properly, but now driving the other cars feels plain weird. Overtaking and lane hopping is a breeze, with great views ahead and behind , courtesy of the large wing mirrors. The first service was done in January 2017 (18k miles) and cost me nothing as the 5 year maintenance package covered everything. August 2017 saw the need to change the summer tyres. The initial 6 months had seen 3 separate punctures, which were plugged successfully, thus saving me the cost of replacing all 4. BMW’s X Drive system is very susceptible to issues with different tyre depths across an axle, and front to rear. The original tyres gave good levels of traction and fair wear rate, but tyre roar was something I couldn’t live with, especially coming from two BMW 5 series before the X3. The new tyres had to be * rated, and eventually settled for Pirelli Rosso P Zero which are in affect the non rft version of the originals. This has been the best transformation, as the car no longer skips over road seams, and tyre roar is decibels quieter, so much so that my wife commented on it! Another positive is with same mileage and same roads, we have not had a single puncture or issue. I carry a tyre inflator, tyre plug kit, tyre slime and have BMW auc warranty (with breakdown service), to cover most eventualities. For the winter tyres I have stayed with rft’s, but due to the increased tyre wall size and smaller cross sections, they handle very well with minimal tyre noise. I also didn’t fancy having to stop on the roadside in the dark, wet winters -VED is £190 -insurance is around £500 (with business class 1 cover) for me and my wife. -Combined fuel consumption is 36mpg, which I’m pleased about as I regularly drive into Central London, but offset by the long trips up into the West Midlands every couple of weeks. -rear Brake pads £380 ( I will use a trusted BMW independent next time) -Ed @Cotswold BMW provided screen wash and a X5 lifting Jack, so I’m able to swap tyres twice a year and give them all a deep clean, polish and wax. - depreciation is my biggest loss, but as I plan to keep her for 8-9 years, this will even out in later ownership. - mileage has been around average at 11k a year, which I see decreasing once the wife’s X1 arrives in 2018 Summer of 2016, I started looking for some winter alloys … 1. A sliding 4 x 4 is never a good look 2. Both 5 series were terrible in winter (on summer tyres) 3. Keep the 19” staggered alloys in pristine condition 4. 245/45/19 and 275/40/19 tyres cost a lot more than 225/60/17’s A new set costs £1500 from BMW, and tyre depots were around £1200. Not the kind of budget I wished to spend on something that will be used for 4 months per year. Bought a near perfect second hand set complete with Pirelli Sottozero II and 7mm tread all round for £300 on Ebay. Only snag was they came off a 2012 X3, which doesn’t use TPMS sensors. BMW supplied and fitted these for £420, so total cost was £720 which is half of BMW. They have proved to be a brilliant upgrade, making the traction in all winter weather very good indeed. Now on my second winter and can see the tyres lasting another season before replacement is due. Nov 2017 – received a bespoke quote for AUC warranty and the car had done 24k miles. We renewed after much discussion at £520 + £100 excess. The winning argument being anything on a BMW will cost a few hundred pounds, so why not take the comprehensive cover and roadside assistance in one package. Summary: I absolutely love this SUV, and plan to keep it another 6-8 years, which would make it 8-9 years old. Whilst looking, nearly bought a few 20.d variants, but so glad I took my wife’s advice and went for the bigger engine. It’s effortless driving and has the get up and go of a low slung sports tourer. Elderly parents love the easy entry/exit. Younger family members enjoy the high up seating. The entertainment system and iDrive are a breeze to use. I didn’t think the previous 530d M Sport E60 could be beaten …. I was wrong!