After driving a 330D you need to get used to the fact that it chugs like a taxi when you start it up in the cold.
However, once you get going it runs very smoothly, if a little bit firmly, and accelerates smoothly and well when required.
The interior is fine I think, solid, pretty good quality (I chose leather seats) - it is to an X5 what and 3-series is to a 5-series - and there is loads of room. It's doing about 36mpg (after about 1500 miles) driving motorways and traffic (50/50).
All in all I am happy with my investment and the only thing that I would consider swapping for at this stage would maybe be the X3 3.0D next year.
Test drove this car a few days back and then the decision to buy it was no-brainer. It runs like dream, and the fuel-efficient diesel engine produces enough torque to give the car a good zip even in the higher gears. The interior is typically ergonomic, just like other BMWs. Handling is excellent.
In July 2004 I took delivery. The delivery was a little rushed and the coffee poor. My third in three years from the dealership and it never gets any better! But the car! I drove away and immediatley drove to central Germany. Fantastic!
Yes the ride was a touch hard, yes the interior feels a touch tacky but a great drive. Seven months on, without doubt this is the best car I have ever owned.
Last week I drove back from Austria after a week's skiing. The car drove like a dream, seven months on the suspension appears to have softened, the interior is as good as new and people still look. As for the auto box a dream on the autobahn there is nothing better than switching to sports mode and accelerating away from Mercs.
Would I recommend the car? No doubt, in fact I will replace this one in July with another, this time the oil burner.
Very frugal version of the X3: I'm getting 37mpg average over 3500 miles, that's over 550 miles per tank. Service costs are low and every 20,000 miles and residuals should be strong. I love everything about it, apart from some slightly shiny plastics and the appalling ride. However, I can't think of another car that's as cheap to run, fun to drive both on and off-road and can handle mountain bikes, luggage and four adults with room to spare. Just glad it doesn't have run-flat tyres and I suppose it does keep you awake on a long journey. My local dealer has been attentive and pleasant to deal with at all times and I have recommended them several times so far. I have yet to use their Service department, however, I have heard good reports and expect them to continue their excellent record.
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