2019 Infiniti QX30 vs. 2019 BMW X3

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Infiniti QX30 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW X3 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Infiniti QX30 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X3 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the QX30 and the X3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty

The QX30 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The X3’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 10,000 miles sooner.

Infiniti’s powertrain warranty covers the QX30 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than BMW covers the X3. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the X3 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

Reliability

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the QX30’s reliability 17 points higher than the X3.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 8th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Infiniti 2 places higher in reliability than BMW.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the QX30 FWD gets better fuel mileage than the X3 sDrive30i RWD (24 city/33 hwy vs. 23 city/30 hwy).

Transmission

The QX30 offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The X3 doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the QX30 has larger tires than the X3 (235/50R18 vs. 225/60R18).

The QX30’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the X3 xDrive30i’s standard 60 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the QX30 AWD’s turning circle is 2.8 feet tighter than the X3 xDrive30i’s (36.6 feet vs. 39.4 feet). The QX30’s turning circle is 2.4 feet tighter than the X3 M40i’s (37.3 feet vs. 39.7 feet).

Chassis

The Infiniti QX30 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 750 to 800 pounds less than the BMW X3.

The QX30 is 11.7 inches shorter than the X3, making the QX30 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The QX30 is 8 inches shorter in height than the X3, making the QX30 much easier to wash and garage and drive (lower center of gravity).

Passenger Space

The front step up height for the QX30 is 2.1 inches lower than the X3 (16.4” vs. 18.5”). The QX30’s rear step up height is 1.3 inches lower than the X3’s (17.2” vs. 18.5”).

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Infiniti service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti first in service department satisfaction. With a 19% lower rating, BMW is ranked 8th.

Ergonomics

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the X3, the QX30 Luxe/Sport/Essential has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The QX30 Luxe/Sport/Essential’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The X3 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the QX30 Sport/Essential to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The X3 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

Economic Advantages

The QX30 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the QX30 will retain 53.6% to 54.72% of its original price after five years, while the X3 only retains 46.62% to 48.02%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the QX30 is less expensive to operate than the X3 because it costs $522 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the QX30 than the X3, including $120 less for a water pump, $477 less for a muffler, $75 less for front brake pads, $289 less for a starter, $162 less for fuel injection, $123 less for a fuel pump, $217 less for front struts, $270 less for a timing belt/chain and $92 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Infiniti QX30 will be $9536 to $13150 less than for the BMW X3.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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