The X3 has it all - sharp handling, a classy image, and it's reliable, too. It's no one-trick on-road pony either, because it's reasonably accomplished on the green stuff, as long as you're not too demanding.
It's not much smaller than its big brother, the X5, inside, so it has plenty of space for all the family and their luggage.
The biggest complaint about new X3s is the high price, but on the used market they're much better value - you can buy a used one for half what it cost new.
On the road
The engine and gearbox are smooth, and wind and road noise are negligible at speed.
A high seating position and a wide range of seat and wheel movement make the spacious cabin a comfortable place to sit.
The handling is crisp and free of the normal body roll of most 4x4s, so you largely forget that you're in an off-roader.
In standard form, the ride is firm and sometimes fidgety, while the Sports model is even harsher.