Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2018 BMW X3 VS 2018 Lexus RX Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2018 BMW X3

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VS

2018 Lexus RX

Safety Comparison

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The X3’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The RX Series doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The X3 has standard Active Protection, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The RX Series doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the X3. But it costs extra on the RX Series.

Both the X3 and the RX Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty Comparison

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The X3’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the RX Series’ (12 vs. 6 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X3 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Lexus only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the RX Series.

There are over 43 percent more BMW dealers than there are Lexus dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the X3’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the X3 second among compact premium SUVs in their 2017 Initial Quality Study. The RX Series isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2017 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Lexus vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Lexus is ranked 15th, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

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The X3 M40i’s standard 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. produces 47 more horsepower (355 vs. 308) than the RX 450h’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6 hybrid.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the X3 gets better fuel mileage than the RX Series:

 

 

X3

RX Series

 

2WD

 

n/a

20 city/27 hwy

350/Auto

4WD

xDrive30i/Auto

22 city/29 hwy

19 city/26 hwy

350/Auto

 

M40i/Auto

20 city/27 hwy

n/a

 

Regardless of its engine, regenerative brakes improve the X3’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. Lexus only offers a regenerative brake system on the RX Series Hybrid.

Regardless of its engine, the X3’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) Lexus only offers an automatic engine start/stop system on the RX Series Hybrid.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the X3 M40i’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the RX Series:

 

X3 xDrive30i

X3 M40i

RX Series

Front Rotors

13 inches

13.7 inches

12.9 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

13.5 inches

13.3 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the X3’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the RX Series (F:245/45R20 & R:275/40R20 vs. 235/65R18).

The X3 xDrive30i’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the RX Series’ standard 65 series tires. The X3’s optional 245/40R21 front and 275/35R21 rear tires have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile than the RX Series’ optional 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X3 offers optional 21-inch wheels. The RX Series’ largest wheels are only 20-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X3 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The RX Series doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the X3’s wheelbase is 3 inches longer than on the RX Series (112.8 inches vs. 109.8 inches).

The X3’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (50.4% to 49.6%) than the RX Series’ (57% to 43%). This gives the X3 more stable handling and braking.

Chassis Comparison

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The X3 is 6.6 inches shorter than the RX Series, making the X3 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The front grille of the X3 uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The RX Series doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The X3 has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the RX Series with its rear seat up (28.7 vs. 18.4 cubic feet). The X3 has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the RX Series with its rear seat folded (62.7 vs. 56.3 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

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The X3’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The RX Series doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations Comparison

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Both are recommended, but Consumer Reports® chose the BMW X3 as its “Top Pick,” the highest scoring vehicle in its category, based on reliability, safety and performance.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the X3 third among compact premium SUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The RX Series isn’t in the top three in its category.

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