Excellent imagery plus a bonus video from northern Sweden with a camouflaged test vehicle.
Images of disguised prototypes undergoing cold-weather testing in northern Sweden mostly come from our spy photo vendors, but not in this case. BMW has decided to spice up its teasing game by releasing some very cool (pun intended) photos of the all-new X3 doing its thing during the Arctic testing phase. The posh crossover had to withstand temperatures of -20 degrees Celsius (-4 degrees Fahrenheit) in snow-heavy Arjeplog located just 56 kilometers (35 miles) south of the polar circle.
It was an ideal area to test the X3’s Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) systems and also tweak the xDrive all-wheel-drive arrangement for the new crossover.
You’ll be happy to hear the adjacent images are depicting a prototype carrying the production body, so it has the final panels as well as the lighting clusters. It’s our best look yet at the third-gen X3 set to feature an evolutionary design on the outside; and it should be just about the same story with the interior cabin.
Although the design will be familiar, the hardware will be vastly different. BMW will give the 2018 X3 its flexible CLAR platform about to shave off a serious amount of weight to boost performance and slash fuel consumption. A bump in size is also expected to distance the model from the X1, and that should pay dividends in terms of cabin space and trunk capacity.
The X3 family of versions will be extensive, as aside from the usual members of the lineup, there’s also going to be a warm M40i and most likely an equivalent M40d with diesel power. Not only that, but BMW is also prepping a full-blown X3 M. If you’re after efficiency, a plug-in hybrid is probably on the agenda and will be followed by the already confirmed X3 EV due in 2020.
The latest gossip indicates BMW will unveil the new X3 in August prior to a public debut a month later at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Production will take place in United States at the Spartanburg factory as well as in South Africa at the Rosslyn plant.
Gallery: 2018 BMW X3 teaser
The new BMW X3 undergoes winter testing
Dynamic test under extreme conditions in North Sweden.
Munich/Arjeplog. Driving dynamic and reliability are just two of the major characteristics of any BMW automobile. To ensure that a BMW functions in all conditions and that the customer is able to enjoy unrestricted access to that brand-typical “driving pleasure” at any time, BMW invests a great deal of time and know-how in both the construction and the testing of new automobiles. Long before a new model series arrives on the market, it will have had to withstand possibly the most severe endurance tests. This includes, for example, testing under extreme climatic conditions such as those prevailing in scorching hot deserts or freezing cold winter landscapes.
Fine tuning for optimal safety and maximum driving enjoyment.
Moreover, the extensive ice surfaces of frozen lakes and the numerous remote roads with their firmly packed layers of snow offer excellent conditions for fine tuning of the settings activated via the Driving Experience Control function – and hence for the application of maximum driving pleasure and best possible driving safety. As a result, engineers are in a position to sense the vehicle’s dynamic behaviour much more accurately and synchronize the control of driver assistant systems such as Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) or Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) even more precisely and to attune it to the vehicle as a whole. It is this painstaking development work that later provides the customer with a competently tuned chassis for that typical BMW driving pleasure.
Ideal preconditions for testing the BMW X3 in the polar region.
Within the framework of the final winter trials, a BMW testing team completed a fastidious testing programme in wintery North Sweden. In the landscape around the small town of Arjeplog, pre-series models of the new BMW X3 had to prove that they are also able to withstand cold, ice and snow. Located in the historic province of Lapland barely 56 kilometres south of the polar circle, Arjeplog offers the ideal conditions for this. An abundant amount of snow and temperatures of minus 20 degrees and below cause the many lakes in the surrounding area to freeze over. The resulting vast, even surfaces serve as proving grounds on which steering, suspension and drive characteristics can be meticulously tested and various different technical solutions compared against one another. In the process, the intelligent four-wheel technology xDrive is able to demonstrate its advantages by not only ensuring best possible traction on icy surfaces but, thanks to fully variable distribution of torque, also by optimizing handling agility, this in turn resulting in enhanced driving dynamics and active driving safety.