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2020 BMW X3 Trim Levels with Comparisons & Configurations.

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2020 BMW X3 Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: sDrive 30i vs xDrive 30i & M40i

What 2020 BMW X3 Trim Level Should you Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

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BMW has long been associated with quality, class, and just being downright cool. But, in recent years, the luxury automobile market has become flooded with different vehicles and automakers who want to compete with BMW. To be clear, the 2020 BMW X3 does have some stiff competition, but it is far from being lost in the crowd.

This model year, the BMW X3 gets a lot of things right. For starters, it has two powerful engine options to choose from, which we will discuss more in-depth in a minute. As part of the third generation that was introduced back in 2018, not a lot has changed or needed to be changed. Along with the two engine choices, you get a pretty long list of both standard and optional features. With so much available, it is easy to customize the X3's spacious interior and under the hood.

One of the stand-out features is BMW's Live Cockpit, which bundles the optional digital gauge cluster with the factory-built navigation system. The only thing that seems to be lacking is Android Auto for smartphone app integration. Oh, and Apple CarPlay is optional, which means you have to pay extra for it. A lot of automakers have both features as standard across their line-ups now since they are in such high demand.

There is little to complain about when it comes to the 2020 BMW X3. It has a solid build with great engine options and a lot of ways to customize it to your liking. That being said, we need to go over the different trim levels so that you can make a more informed decision on which one you want to buy. At the end of this comparison review, we will declare which trim level we think is going to appeal most to the average consumer, so be sure to read through to the very last word.

Compare the 2020 BMW X3 sDrive30i vs xDrive30i Trims. What is the difference?

The 2020 BMW X3 line-up starts with the sDrive30i. This trim level is named for its powertrain and drivetrain combo, as are the other trim levels. The sDrive30i is a rear-wheel drive model while the xDrive30i has all-wheel drive. That is really the only difference between them, and it is about $2,000 to upgrade to the xDrive30i. Both of these trim levels are powered by a 2.0-L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that generates 248 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. This much power helps the vehicle get from 0 to 60 mph in roughly 6 seconds. Not a bad showing for a vehicle in this class. Like the M40i, this powertrain is rounded out with an 8-speed automatic transmission. An active kidney grille comes equipped. Other mechanical features include auto-start/stop for the engine, high gloss black aero blades, brake energy regeneration, and electronic throttle control. The xDrive30i does add driving dynamics control. This lets you switch between COMFORT, SPORT, and ECO PRO modes.

The sDrive30i and xDrive30i both come with electric power steering and an electromechanical parking brake. Standard mechanical features on both trims also include twin-tube gas pressure shock absorbers, power-assist steering, and a dynamic stability control system that includes a start-off assistant, brake fade compensation, dynamic traction control, and brake drying. Altogether, these features make for a ride that feels composed and natural. The steering and handling capabilities are just what you should expect from a BMW.

On the outside, these trims are equipped with 18-inch Y-spoke light alloy wheels that come equipped with all-season tires. Also, the side mirrors are power-folding and heated, and there are satin aluminum roof rails up top. The exhaust tips are done in chrome, and there is a roof spoiler with a center brake light. Also, you can choose between a number of different non-metallic body paint colors and get satin aluminum exterior trim with it.

The cabin is cozy and designed to give you a feeling of luxury. The SensaTec upholstery looks and feels nice to the touch, and given that they are well-padded for support, you can enjoy long trips in these seats. The dark oak wood trim is stylish enough, and there is an anthracite headliner to top it all off. Floor mats and a cargo cover are also standard.

When it comes to connectivity, these two trims have one minor flaw - the lack of Android Auto and the pricy option of adding Apple CarPlay. The BMW Teleservices features are helpful though, as is BMW's Connected Drive bundle. Audio streaming is included with Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, and there are USB connections available. The Connected Package Professional has real time traffic as well as concierge services, the BMW Connected App, and BMW Remote Services (which includes remote door unlock and stolen vehicle recovery).

The standard audio system includes an anti-theft AM/FM radio and HD radio with reception for multi-cast FM station. There is also pre-wiring for SiriusXM Satellite Radio. The 12-speaker hi-fi sound system and 205-watt digital amplifier should also be pretty attractive to buyers since they produce concert-like sound quality.

As already mentioned above, BMW's Live Cockpit Plus package bundles a lot of great features. These advanced features include an 8.8-inch touchscreen, a digital instrument cluster, iDrive 6.0, a touchpad controller, and natural voice operation. In addition to this, you will get a rear window defroster, Dynamic Cruise Control 3, a tire pressure monitor, galvanic control, and a three-spoke steering wheel that is wrapped in leather and has controls for Bluetooth, cruise control, and audio mounted onto it.

Both vehicles also have a lot of creature comforts to offer drivers and passengers alike. Take, for example, the Advanced Vehicle and Key Memory system. This equips the vehicle the most recently used air distribution and climate control temperature settings, power seat and side mirror settings, lighting and central locking preferences, radio presets, and audio tone settings. There is also an engine start/stop button, 10-way power-adjustable front sport seats with 2-way manual headrests and 2-way power side bolsters, a 40/20/40 split-folding rear seat, tri-zone climate control, a tilt and telescopic steering column, rain-sensing windshield wipers, interior courtesy lights, a power tailgate, and locking glove box. Not to mention, you also get the storage package, which has two cargo rails, luggage nets on the front seat backs, and a multi-purpose hook with its own tensioning strap on either side.

Of course, you are probably wondering what kind of safety features come equipped on the sDrive30i and xDrive30i. These trims both come equipped with LED headlights and fog lights, a rear-view camera, front and rear parking distance control, adaptive brake lights, programmable LED daytime running lights, and active guard (which has front collision warning, automatic city collision mitigation and braking, and daytime pedestrian detection). They also come with BMW Assist eCall, giving you an enhanced automatic collision notification and an SOS button with the emergency request feature.

Note that there is a hybrid variant of the xDrive30i called the xDrive30e. This vehicle has the same engine but adds a 107 hp integrated electric motor and high-precision direct injection, which creates a total of 288 hp. On the inside and outside, though, this variant echoes its gas-only sibling.

Compare the 2020 BMW X3 xDrive30i vs M40i. What is the difference?

The real change here comes from the M40i. It prices well above the xDrive30i, but it gains a ton of power from its engine option. The M40i gets the remarkably powerful 3.0-liter BMW M Performance twin-turbo 6-cylinder engine with its twin-scroll turbocharger and variable valve control. Together with the 8-speed sport automatic transmission, the M40i musters up a strong 382 hp. It also gets the M Sport exhaust system, M Sport suspension, all-wheel drive, M Sport brakes, and variable sport steering.

The exterior gets some noteworthy upgrades as well, starting with the 19-inch M double-spoke bi-color wheels with all-season tires. It also has an aerodynamic kit and shadowline exterior trim. The roof rails are also done in shadowline for a sleek overall appearance. The interior is mostly designed the same, but you will find that the M40i has some nice aluminum rhombicle trim. You also get the expanded check control vehicle monitor system and a panoramic moonroof with a two-piece glass panel that is fully automatic, wind deflector, power slide and lift control, and a power interior sunshade. There is also an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, velour carpeting in the fully-finished cargo area, remote trunk release, and power outlets located in the trunk, rear center console, and front center console storage compartment.

The M40i has some really helpful safety features too. The Active Protection System is a nifty bundle of features that detects impacts that are just about to happen and prepares the vehicle's occupants by automatically adjusting the pretensioners on the seatbelts, closing the moonroof and locking the doors, and activating the vehicle's post-crash braking capabilities. This system also includes the Fatigue and Focus alert, which detects when the driver is losing focus or drifting off to sleep and issues a warning. This system is extremely handy and seems to respond appropriately and in a timely fashion.

2020 BMW X3: Which Trim to Choose?

There you have it. The 2020 BMW X3 has a superb line-up of trim level choices, and these vehicles are great entry-level models. Reasonably priced, the sDrive30i and xDrive30i will likely be the line-up's top sellers. While the xDrive30e will garner some attention, a lot of people will still choose the gas-only variant. It is a good choice if you are looking for a hybrid powertrain though, and it is probably one of the more powerful options that you will find.

In all honesty, the xDrive30i is the trim level to buy. The all-wheel drive system is outstanding and should appeal to those who live in climates where inclement weather often creates driving hazards. This trim level offers a ton of fantastic features, and they all come at an affordable price for the average driver. This vehicle has a lot of luxury appeal despite being entry-level, and it has a sporty feel. Its driving performance is all about precision and control. Flip it into Sport mode to gain some bulk and speed.

The xDrive30i has a strong four-cylinder engine, and although it does not quite reach the degree of power you get on the M40i, you don't have to pay the extra money that you would for the M40i. The power upgrade on the M40i is decent but probably not worth the extra $12,000. That is a staggering additional cost for the average driver, so only go for the M40i if you are able to easily justify that extra cost.

The xDrive30i has a lot of options that you can upgrade to, making it easy to customize this vehicle to your liking. Spend carefully, though, as the X3 can get expensive the more you equip. Still, quite a few of the options are affordable and worth the purchase.

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2020 BMW Trim Level Guides:

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2020 BMW X6 Trim Levels
Previous BMW X3 Trim Configurations:

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