BMW iX3 review: boot space, seating & practicality
While the BMW iX3 is less practical than the petrol model, it’s still a spacious and versatile family SUV
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On paper, practicality isn't quite as good as in a petrol or diesel-powered X3, but it’s all relative. To make room for the battery and motor technology, BMW has had to restrict boot space by 40 litres to 510 litres. But there's actually 60 litres more than you'll find in the plug-in hybrid model, thanks to some clever packaging.
Rear-seat space is unchanged; there's plenty for adults and children alike, which combined with the standard-fit panoramic sunroof, makes the iX3 feel light and airy. All this, added to the competitive real-world range and rapid-charging capability, means the iX3 is a pretty practical family car. If you can charge at home, the BMW could easily function as a household’s only car.
BMW iX3 interior space, storage & comfort
If you’ve ever sat inside a normal BMW X3, then the electric version will feel very familiar. That means the rear seats are roomy, with the sense of space emphasised by the standard panoramic roof. You’ll easily get two child seats in the rear and there’s no sloping roofline like in a Jaguar I-Pace, although unlike some ground-up electric cars, there’s no flat floor, which means sitting three abreast in the back can be a squeeze.
In terms of storage, again, it’s identical to the petrol X3. That means there are plenty of useful cubbies, and a decent-sized glovebox. The door bins are big enough to carry a large bottle, and there are two cupholders on the centre console. It’s a conventional layout, rather than offering anything particularly innovative.
The BMW iX3’s boot is smaller than the one you’ll find in a petrol or diesel X3, but it’s still a decent size and plenty big enough for most families. In fact, at 510 litres, it’s 10 litres bigger than the Mercedes EQC’s and five litres bigger than a Jaguar I-Pace’s. There’s even a small storage space under the iX3’s boot floor for keeping the car’s charge cables out of sight.
Fold the rear seats and you’ll uncover a huge 1,560-litre load bay, which is pretty good even by petrol SUV standards. Still, if you want maximum carrying capacity, the Audi Q8 e-tron is the biggest of the bunch; the Tesla Model X is larger still, but it’s a much bigger and more expensive car, which effectively sits in the class above. Not to mention it’s now left-hand drive only.
In This Review
- 1VerdictRefined, spacious and good to drive, the BMW iX3 makes sense as an electric family SUV – but some rivals feel more special
- 2Range, battery & chargingDespite looking like a regular BMW, the iX3 uses cutting-edge battery and charging technology
- 3Running costs & insuranceAn efficient drivetrain and the same ultra-low company-car tax rate as any electric car make the iX3 very cheap to run for a big SUV
- 4Performance, engine & driveDespite being down on power compared with some rivals, the BMW iX3 feels fast and quite good fun; the ride is a little firm, though
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe inside of the BMW iX3 is logically laid-out and well built, but rival models' cabins feel more modern and more luxurious
- 6Boot space, seating & practicality - currently readingWhile the BMW iX3 is less practical than the petrol model, it’s still a spacious and versatile family SUV
- 7Reliability & safety ratingBMW has only an average reputation for reliability, but with fewer moving parts than its petrol models, the iX3 should be a dependable family SUV