2011 BMW
X3 xDrive28i
vs. 2012 BMW
X5 xDrive35i

2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i

9.8

starting from

$37,625
"The X3 looks fresh in its new duds...understated good looks"
caranddriver.com | talking about the X3's external styling
"The cabin is much nicer than before, although it is bereft of its own personality"
caranddriver.com | talking about the X3's interior quality

Reasons to buy the BMW X3 xDrive28i

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Average city fuel efficiency
19 mpg
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Quite expensive
$37,625
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Average highway fuel efficiency
25 mpg
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Has a subwoofer
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i

9.5

Runner-up

BMW X5 xDrive35i

starting from

$48,075
"The eight-speed automatic produces the sort of smooth shifts and quick responses you'd expect"
edmunds.com | talking about the X5's transmission
"The X5 has always put a premium on its handling, however, and for 2011 that doesn't change."
edmunds.com | talking about the X5's handling

Reasons to buy the BMW X5 xDrive35i

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Average cargo space
75.2 ft3
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Quite powerful
300 HP @ 5,800 RPM
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Power outlets
Standard
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Turbocharged engine improves performance
Entertainment System 10.0 vs 8.0
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i Winner: X3 xDrive28i
[details]
  • The X3 xDrive28i's subwoofer accurately reproduces deep bass notes in music
  • Almost the same
  • The X3 xDrive28i has 2 more speakers, providing a better entertainment experience, 12 vs 10
Safety Features 9.3 vs 10.0
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i Winner: X5 xDrive35i
[details]
  • The X5 xDrive35i has 1 more airbag (including Side), 5 vs 4
Cost 10.0 vs 9.4
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i Winner: X3 xDrive28i
[details]
  • Gets around 20% more miles per gallon in the city, 19 mpg vs 16 mpg
  • The best price we've seen is $10,450 cheaper (more than 20% less), $37,625 vs $48,075
Performance 9.6 vs 10.0
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i Winner: X5 xDrive35i
[details]
  • Almost the same
  • Almost the same, Twin turbocharger vs None
  • Around 30% more powerful, 300 HP @ 5,800 RPM vs 240 HP @ 6,600 RPM
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Both have power seats
  • Neither offers a sun roof
Crash Test Ratings - vs -
Missing information
[details]
Practicality 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Both offer an upgrade to a navigation system
Road Tests 10.0 vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • The X5 xDrive35i has lightning fast acceleration, and the X3 xDrive28i isn't bad, either
  • The X3 xDrive28i has phenomenal cornering abilities, and the X5 xDrive35i is not bad, either
  • Both vehicles have above average braking abilities for this class of vehicle
Overall 9.8 vs 9.5

Entertainment System

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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Number of speakers 12 vs 10 Both have more speakers, but the X3 xDrive28i in particular has a large number
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Has speed sensitive volume No vs No Neither offers speed-sensitive volume
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Optional vs Not Available Like your tunes? In the X3 xDrive28i, you can upgrade to satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Yes Both have an audio-in jack so you can plug in your own MP3 player to the stereo
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Has subwoofer Yes vs No The X3 xDrive28i has a subwoofer to accurately produce deep bass frequencies in music
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entertainment system Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers an entertainment system

Safety Features

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Yes Both have electronic stability control
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Airbags 4 vs 5 The X5 xDrive35i has an OK number of airbags while the X3 xDrive28i has very few (missing Side)
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Rear brakes Disc vs Disc Both have the usual brakes for this class of vehicle
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system BMW Assist vs BMW Assist

Cost

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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MSRP $37,625 vs $48,075 The X3 xDrive28i has a reasonable price, while the X5 xDrive35i is very expensive
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In-city gas mileage 19 mpg vs 16 mpg The X3 xDrive28i has OK city mileage, while the X5 xDrive35i is very inefficient
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basic warranty miles 50,000 mile vs 50,000 mile Longer basic warranty
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basic warranty years 4 year vs 4 year Longer-lasting basic warranty

Performance

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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Horsepower 240 HP @ 6,600 RPM vs 300 HP @ 5,800 RPM The X5 xDrive35i is fairly powerful, but the X3 xDrive28i is not far behind
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Number of gears 8 vs 8 Plenty of gears
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Transmission Semi-automatic transmission vs Semi-automatic transmission Both offer a semi-automatic transmission, a nice perk for this class
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paddle shifters Not Available vs Standard The X5 xDrive35i comes standard with paddle shifters for ultimate driving control; not available on the X3 xDrive28i
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Air compressor None vs Twin turbocharger The X5 xDrive35i's Twin turbocharger lets it maximize power output, quite rare for this class of vehicle
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Power-to-weight ratio 17.1 lb/hp vs 16.5 lb/hp Both have OK performance
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Drivetrain type all-wheel drive vs all-wheel drive Both have the usual drivetrain for this class of vehicle
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Curb-to-curb turning radius 39.0 ft vs 42.0 ft The X3 xDrive28i is comparable to most other vehicles for turning, but the X5 xDrive35i is quite bad

Luxury Features

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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moon roof Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a sun roof
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power seats Standard vs Standard Both have power seats
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Optional vs Optional Both offer an upgrade to leather

Crash Test Ratings

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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Rollover resistance Unknown vs Unknown
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Front driver crash test Unknown vs Unknown
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Driver side crash test Unknown vs Unknown

Practicality

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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Passengers 5 vs 7 The X5 xDrive35i has lots of passenger seats and the X3 xDrive28i is OK, too
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Cargo space 27.6 ft3 vs 75.2 ft3 The X5 xDrive35i has OK cargo room, while the X3 xDrive28i has very little
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front seats 53.8 ft3 vs Unknown
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Base payload capacity 904 lb vs 1,290 lb Average towing capacity
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folding rear seats Standard vs Standard Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
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power outlets Not Available vs Standard The X5 xDrive35i's standard power outlets will keep your gadgets charged; not available on the X3 xDrive28i
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navigation system Optional vs Optional Both offer an upgrade to a navigation system
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Cupholders 8 vs 4 The X3 xDrive28i has a good number of cupholders, but the X5 xDrive35i does not
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Road Tests

BMW
X3 xDrive28i
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i BMW
X5 xDrive35i
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0-60 mph 6.7 seconds vs 6.4 seconds The X5 xDrive35i has lightning fast acceleration, and the X3 xDrive28i isn't bad, either
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Braking distance at 60mph 129 ft vs 130 ft Both vehicles have above average braking abilities for this class of vehicle
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1/4 mile Unknown vs 14.7 s s @ 92.0 mph mph
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Lateral acceleration 0.84 g vs 0.81 g The X3 xDrive28i has phenomenal cornering abilities, and the X5 xDrive35i is not bad, either
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Top speed 150 mph vs Unknown

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i 2011 Honda CR-V X3 xDrive28i vs CR-V
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i 2011 Subaru Forester 2.5X X3 xDrive28i vs Forester 2.5X
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i 2011 Mercedes-Benz GLK350 X3 xDrive28i vs GLK350
2011 BMW X3 xDrive28i 2011 Volkswagen Tiguan SE 4Motion X3 xDrive28i vs Tiguan SE 4Motion
2011 BMW X3 xDrive35i 2011 Volkswagen Touareg TDI X3 xDrive35i vs Touareg TDI
2012 BMW X5 Premium Placeholder X5 Premium vs Q5 Premium Plus
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i 2011 Mercedes-Benz ML350 X5 xDrive35i vs ML350
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i 2012 Volvo XC90 3.2 X5 xDrive35i vs XC90 3.2
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i 2011 Lexus RX 350 X5 xDrive35i vs RX 350
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i 2011 Toyota Highlander SE X5 xDrive35i vs Highlander SE

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