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model. 2020 BMW X3 PHEV
price. $49,545 (incl $995 destination)
as tested. $60,545 incl dest Xdrive30e
seating/style. 5-pass/4-door SUV
powertrain. 2.0-liter 4-cylinder, 288HP
transmission. 8-speed
driveline. RWD, AWD tested
fuel economy. city/highway/combined
available. now
words. Rebecca Lindland
visuals. Rebecca Lindland

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As a former long-time owner of 3 BMW SAVs, climbing into the X3 xDrive30e felt as familiar as fuzzy slippers. But once I got going with that fabulous instant torque in electric mode, I felt more like I was in my favorite racetrack shoes.

BMW’s stuffed its 2.0-liter BMW TwinPower Turbo inline 4-cylinder with integrated electric motor into the X3, which hasn’t evolved significantly design-wise but why mess with a good thing? The interior layout and infotainment system are intuitive, but gesture control felt gimmicky. The head’s up display was excellent and navigation flawless.

The plug-in-hybrid aspect provided upwards of 20 miles of all-electric range, although charging took nearly 14 hours on a 110-volt trickle charge, so look to install a fast charger in your home should you go the PHEV route. A $5,836 federal tax credit and other incentives may be available, too. I averaged a whopping 34.7 MPG including 65 miles of driving in EV mode only of the 110 miles I drove the vehicle.

I enjoyed the drivability, comfort, and all-around drama-free experience of tooling around in the X3 PHEV. It’s not as flashy as some vehicles (see: Mercedes GLC43), but in today’s chaotic world, an understatement is welcome.

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