BMW's X-series SUVs have never been praised for their off road capabilities, but if you really want to go off road, this is certainly BMW's top candidate for the job.

Back in June, German BMW tuner Hartge presented its "field and game" interpretation of the BMW X3 - the Hartge HUNTER. Now, six months later, Hartge has supplied more information on the "ultimate hunting machine" and it's time to judge whether this is the car for nimrods.

Apart from giving the X3 a proper hunting color, washable 'Sensatec' leather seats and a steering wheel in green leather and maple, Hartge has increased ground clearance by three centimetres (to 23 cm) and fitted proper all-terrain tires on Hartge's 18-inch light weight alloys. The Hunter is available in two engine variants; the 3.0d where power has been upped from a standard 218 bhp to 253 bhp and the 335 bhp 3.0sd for the "bhp-spoiled hunters' society." The axle drive ratio has been shortened and thanks to the extra torque and automatic differential locks the Hunter manages well in rough terrain. It is also capable of climbing slopes up to 48 degrees and is 'certified' to wade through waters of 50 cm. That's almost Land Rover Defender performance...

It's well known that BMW's X-series sport utility vehicles have never been praised for their off road capabilities, but if you really want to go off road, this is certainly BMW's top candidate for the job. Then again, there's always the Defender. In fact, for this kind of money you could easily pick up the Land Rover Defender Design Edition that we showed you earlier this week. But you won't be carrying the game home at 210 km/h.

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Hartge Launches X3 'Hunter'