Automotive News: “BMW’s revamped X3 is no threat to the Q5 according to Audi”

BMW X3 | November 20th, 2010 by 52
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Things are started to heat up in the premium compact SUV segment. Last year, the segment was dominated by the Audi Q5 and Mercedes GLK, …

Things are started to heat up in the premium compact SUV segment. Last year, the segment was dominated by the Audi Q5 and Mercedes GLK, mostly due to the X3 approaching the end of its lifecycle and in need of a design refresh. The compact has recently seen some increased competition from the Lexus RX, a car that many consumers compare it now against the aforementioned models.

With the new X3 just weeks away from hitting the showrooms of BMW dealerships, Audi comes out with a statement downplaying the threat it could pose to its high-seller Q5.

“I don’t expect to see any downturn in Q5 volume. In fact, we will sell more Q5s next year than we did this year,” Johan de Nysschen, president of Audi of America, said in an interview for Automotive News at the Los Angeles auto show. “The car is hot.”

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Sales of the Q5 through October rose 77 percent compared with last year to 18,735, according to Autodata Corp., a Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey-based researcher.

Audi has a 12-day supply of the Q5 and the company could sell 1,000 more a month if they had more vehicles, de Nysschen said.

It is fair to say that BMW has reinvented this small, premium SUV segment with their first generation X3. In 2004, the only company running a product in this space was Land Rover and their Freelander model. The X3 positioned itself as a compact, premium, versatile Sports Activity Vehicle.

The previous generation X3 sales have exceeded BMW’s expectations throughout the years, but there was still room for improvement. Moving up in size will allow the X3 to be positioned at the level of the first X5 model, but at a lower price. Adding into the buying factors an improved interior design, significant performance boost from the new six-cylinder engines and 20% more fuel efficient than its competitors, the new X3 is looking to regain its status within the segment.

See our test drive review of the 2011 BMW X3

“It’s likely we’ll see the segment really grow to naturally accommodate whatever plans our BMW colleagues have,” de Nysschen said.

We are already looking forward to test drive comparisons between the cars.

Read our photo comparison between the BMW X3 vs. Audi Q5 vs. Mercedes-Benz GLK

[Source: Automotive News ]

52 responses to “Automotive News: “BMW’s revamped X3 is no threat to the Q5 according to Audi””

  1. viper says:

    the x3 although a brand new model , looks like bad concept from 2003 , it seriously sucks when next to q5.

    • Bryce says:

      I never thought I’d say this… but I agree with viper. The X3 already looks outdated and it hasn’t even hit showroom floors yet. In my opinion, the only way it looks good is with the M Sport package.

    • Dude says:

      Guess, I have to go and buy some more BMW stock, now that Viper doesn’t like the car. So far that has always been an indicator for another BMW success story ;-)

    • FreudeKing says:

      I agree, it is so disappointing. Look at the ugly X3 compared to the other two from the front. The X3 looks weak and bloated, like a fat child sitting there not knowing what to do, lacking confidence! Perhaps that’s what he meant when he said that the X3 will be no threat to the Q5 and that Q5 will sell even more after the launch of the X3 because he probably thinks that customers who were waiting for an amazing X3 and is now disappointed with this ugly piece of >>> will not go settle for a car that is more visually appealing (Q5 in this case).

      As for the wait for the test drive, why do you even bother looking forward to that because the BMW will be the best anyway. They don’t even need to test it. I mean what can you expect when the Q5 is 80% VW!

    • Don Gino says:

      Lucky we all know what an expert “viper” is ;-)

      When VW marketing has to send their troops out in force to spread their FUD on the web you know you have a winner.

  2. paul says:

    I have to agree with the Audi boy…the X3 looks outdated allready – ive been to my dealer and they had it in black – compared to the Q5. I think the market target bmw was going for with this car is looking at something more sporty and jovial – and they have it on the X1. I think thats the reason the X3 is so cheap – leather, bigger, etc for 150£ less than the outgoing model.
    Plus it isnt has nice to drive as the outgoing model – the X1 is more sporty and the X5 more composed -. I think its biggest problem is the competition from within bmw. I doubt they will sell as many as the previous model and then the Q5 does look more modern

  3. bob says:

    More Big Talk from BMW’s “our friends from Indolstadt”. Is it or is it not plausible that Audi decided to go to the media as a preemptive measure? If they’re truly that confident, why say anything at all?!

    • FreudeKing says:

      because not saying anything and not showing anything to cut costs (like what BMW has sone) has made Audi gain market share as Audi have taken the effort to speak to their customers and show and promote their products while BMW sat back and thought they were too far above to be touched by any competitors. What do we have now? Audi sales are about 90% of BMWs worldwide compared to 50% in 2003.

  4. X5SoB says:

    The Q5 is truly a marvelous vehicle. But, it’s not a BMW. The BMW is in many ways a cautious redesign, and probably not radical enough for Audi/MB fanboys to appreciate. But, I doubt that BMW faithful will be inclined to switch, and, as people become more used to the styling, more will be drawn to BMW’s superior dynamics. I’m not saying Audi/MB sucks, just BMW is better, and people will see that.

    • FreudeKing says:

      This is not a styling to get used to, it is a styling that you need to keep yourself awake with. I think it is more interesting to watch a pig run around than to look at this ugly X3 from the front.

  5. Stevie says:

    SEriously, those who said that 2011 bmw x3 is outdated in the designing cue has not seen this car in the real life. I happened to be one of the first to be there to witness this car when they unveiled the curtain and this car is just a beauty. From the photo, you just can’t see the masculinity in the fullest. Just wait for a few more days and then you will be able to stop by your local bmw dealer and take a look at it. you will be surprised how nice this x3 looks. Trust me. Oh yeah, by the way, the interior space is a lot bigger than Q5 especially the rear interior, and the interior design is really nice.

    • FreudeKing says:

      I have seen it and it is not pretty at all. There is no “masculinity in the fullest” as you say it. The front is so flat and bloated that I cannot draw the link. It is like a puffed up face of a fat person – fat rolls!

  6. plaxico says:

    well ,duh

  7. Tima says:

    We can see the masculinity of a side and rear, but what about face? Ugly and tasteless. Even live car doesn’t be better Q5 or GLK. Dismiss dinosaur designers from the office.

  8. ferrarifan says:

    the title (by automotive news) obviously just wants to bring up a debate.. the press seams to make a fuzz about every word a person says these days.. they just said they “dont expect any downturn next year” and you guys already have “x3 is no threat to q5”?! what the hell.

  9. wazon8 says:

    Both of them are not exciting for me.

  10. adc says:

    The biggest complaint I have for the Q5 is that even compared to the outgoing X3, it is severely lacking in interior and cargo space. Go sit in one, you will not mistake it for a big family car (I thought the A4 Avant was better packaged).

    The X3 offers *significantly* more space – and with the new engines, also significantly more pace. A winner.

    • FreudeKing says:

      What’s the point of having more space if it looks ugly from the outside?? I might as well buy a VW van

      • adc says:

        Well obviously the point is that you’re spending 99% percent of the time *inside* the car, not outside it. And unless you care more about the aesthetic opinions of passers-by than about your own comfort and enjoyment, you should always pick the car that drives best and offers the qualities you need.

        If you value pretty over substance, then the Q5 is the car for you.

        • FreudeKing says:

          This is an exterior design debate, so you are saying the Q5 looks better. Also, you may be surpised by the driving dynamics of the new X3. Some are saying that it is terrible. I have yet to test it.

          • XC says:

            Actually is you OWN debate, nobody really cares what you think, drive or like.

          • FreudeKing says:

            I don’t care what you think either, and I don’t care whether you care about my feelings and rating of this new cars. Afterall, this is a blog and if you don’t like what someone is saying, either argue something back that is supportive of your viewpoint or keep quiet.

            It is so stupid to have commets here like “I don’t care, I don’t care”, well if you don’t care, get off this blog. Why even bother replying? Afterall, this is a place where people write what they think about the article and the subject.

          • XC says:

            Oh come on! Don’t be a sissy. If you throw BS all over the place be ready to receive BS back. And no, nobody really cares about what the next guy drives. Or about your ‘feelings’. PERIOD

  11. paul says:

    well just test drove the new X3 today. I have to say i have mixed feelings. It was the 2d with auto. The car is so so smooth over bumpy roads. the seats very confortable and not much road noise. It was on 17 rims but the noise from the mirrors is intruding. They are quite large. The car is very confortable indeed and the gear box is stuning! Its almost like a DSG. But that´s where i get the mixed feelings. It felt like a mercedes to drive, not like a BMW. The steering as no feel whatsoever, you cant tell where the wheels are. It has weight, so its not to light but no feel. If i didnt know i was in a bmw i would have said it was a mercedes. Its a very good car, specially for that price but just didnt feel like a bimmer to me. Im glad I opted for a RR.

    • FreudeKing says:

      Don’t tell me this X3 is also infected with BMW’s poor quality, inferior electric steering virus!!! Is it?

      • paul says:

        yep…ruined what would be otherwise a great bmw

        • FreudeKing says:

          So not only do they look ugly, they drive terribly too. What BMW used to have are ALL GONE!

          • Dude says:

            caranddriver: “the electrohydraulic variable-assist power steering is as accurate and tactile as anything else in BMW’s entire lineup”

            leftlanenews: “But at the end of the day, we think the X3 gives some of the best driver feedback of any of the new electronic power steering systems available”

            roadandtrack: “The new Servotronic electric-assist steering feels natural and well-weighted”

   “Lob gibt es auch für die neue, zielgenaue und feines Feedback liefernde elektro-mechanische Servolenkung.” (same conclusion german)

          • XC says:

            Hey Dude, probably Freuwathev knows better…lol

  12. RK says:

    I am a huge BMW guy and own an X5, the old X3 was terrible and the new one is better, but I still think the Q5 is the class leader – the Q7 on the other hand isn’t an X5.

    Maybe the X3 would win me over on driving dynamics, but looks are not that good!

  13. ToddJames says:

    WOW, Vw/ Audi sent the entire internet gorilla marketing group in here for this one. I guess BMW hit a soft spot with the new X3…… Ha

    • Bryce says:

      I don’t think there are any “gorilla marketing group” members here, I think there are just a whole lot of BMW owners and fans who are very disappointed with the new X3… now that’s not to say there aren’t some BMW haters here. There are a couple of people who post on this site that never have anything positive to say about BMW. I, however, am just a very disappointed BMW fan. Now I’ll probably drive the X1, X3, Q5, and GLK before I make a decision, but from looks alone I’m leaning towards the GLK.

  14. Adriano says:

    To be very honest, I know that the Q5 uses A5 completely new platform, but for me Q5 is a higher A3…. And current A3 is derived from an old project that was a great way to create one of the best VW ever, the MK4 Golf. Only this. On the other hands, X3 could be conservative, I agree and particularly doesn’t liked a lot, but we can’t even compare one to another.., the X3 is all much better.

  15. viper says:

    most agree and finally see the failure in X3 design.
    again bmw hire a better designer.

  16. XC says:

    I’m surprised to see how people can’t read between lines… the audi guy is OBVIOUSLY considering the new X3 as a threat. Otherwise he would not be downplaying the car so openly.

    If he had said something like ‘the new X3 looks like a good imporvement, but I consider our car better’, that would have made me think… but ‘the car is hot’ is just blunt.

  17. Babken says:

    Though I’m sure that the new X3 will regain its No1 status among the competitors, I have to say that design-wise its one of the worst looking BMW ever made. The next is the new 6 Series.

    • FreudeKing says:

      What do you associate new BMW cars with?

      new 6 Series – HUGE BUG EYES
      new X3 – BLOATED FAT FACE
      new 7 Series – PIG NOSTRILS
      new 5 Series – SOWLLEN NOSE and SLEEPY EYES
      new X1 – UGLY DUCK (and I mean the ugliest you can get and I have yet to see one)

      None of the above sounds/looks attractive to me, unfortunately. Yet designers get inspired by these things…. They call them emotion making. WT#

  18. BMWDriver says:

    As a BMW owner, I have to agree the X3 is a disappointment. Q5 is still the best as of the moment.

  19. stoli says:

    The new X3 is very very ugly car! nothing can change this fact. it might drive well, has very good dynamic performance, but it all makes very dynamic UGLY CAR.

  20. BIMMER1 says:

    To everyone saying the Q5 is better, have you actually driven one? Even with the stiffer susp. option the think rides like a 10 year old caddy with blown shocks. But hey, if you like that sort of thing…

  21. Danny Shore says:

    stoli is right. there are some ugly BMWs but this one tops it.

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