BMW X3 (F25) Owners Manual: Things to remember when driving

BMW X3 (F25) Owners Manual / Driving tips / Things to remember when driving

Vehicle features and options

This chapter describes all standard, country-specific and optional features offered with the series. It also describes features that are not necessarily available in your car, e. g., due to the selected options or country versions. This also applies to safety-related functions and systems. The respectively applicable country provisions must be observed when using the respective features and systems.

Breaking-in period

General information

Moving parts need time to adjust to one another (break-in time).

The following instructions will help accomplish a long vehicle life and good efficiency.

During break-in, do not use the Launch Control.

Engine, transmission, and axle drive

Up to 1,200 miles/2,000 km Do not exceed the maximum engine and road speed:

  • For gasoline engine 4,500 rpm and 100 mph/160 km/h.
  • For diesel engine 3,500 rpm and 93 mph/150 km/h.

Avoid full load or kickdown under all circumstances.

From 1,200 miles/2,000 km The engine and vehicle speed can gradually be increased.


Tire traction is not optimal due to manufacturing circumstances when tires are brand-new; they achieve their full traction potential after a break-in time.

Drive conservatively for the first 200 miles/300 km.

Brake system

Brakes require an initial break-in period of approx.

300 miles/500 km to achieve optimal performance between brake discs and brake pads. Drive moderately during this break-in period.

Following part replacement

The same break-in procedures should be observed if any of the components above-mentioned have to be renewed in the course of the vehicle's operating life.

Driving on poor roads

The vehicle connects four wheel drive to the advantages of a normal truck

Do not drive on unpaved terrain

Do not drive on unpaved terrain; otherwise, the vehicle may be damaged.

For your own safety, for the safety of passengers and of the vehicle, heed the following points:

  • Become familiar with the vehicle before starting a trip; do not take risks in driving.
  • Adjust the speed to the road surface conditions.

    The steeper and more uneven the road surface, the slower the speed should be.

  • When driving on steep uphill or downhill grades: add engine oil and coolant up to near the MAX mark. Uphill and downhill grades can be traveled up to no more than 50 %.
  • On steep downhill grades, use Hill Descent Control HDC.

    Starting out is possible on uphill grades up to 30 %. The permissible side tilt is 30 %.

  • Avoid that the chassis bottom coming in contact with the ground.

    The ground clearance is no more than 7.8 inches/20 cm and can vary according to the vehicle's load.

  • When wheels continue to spin, depress the accelerator so that driving stability control systems can distribute the driving force to the wheels. Activate DTC Dynamic Traction Control if available.

After a trip on poor roads

After a trip on poor roads, check wheels and tires for damage to maintain driving safety.

Clear heavy soiling from the body.

General driving notes

Closing the tailgate

Drive with the tailgate closed

Only drive with the tailgate closed; otherwise, in the event of an accident or braking and evasive maneuvers, passengers and other traffic may be injured, and the vehicle may be damaged. In addition, exhaust fumes may enter the vehicle interior.

If driving with the tailgate open cannot be avoided:

  • Close all windows and the glass sunroof.
  • Greatly increase the air flow from the vents.
  • Drive moderately.

Hot exhaust system

Hot exhaust system

High temperatures are generated in the exhaust system.

Do not remove the heat shields installed and never apply undercoating to them. Make sure that flammable materials, e. g. hay, leaves, grass, etc. do not come in contact with the hot exhaust system while driving, while in idle position mode, or when parked. Such contact could lead to a fire, resulting in an increased risk of serious personal injury as well as property damage.

Do not touch hot exhaust pipes; otherwise, there is a danger of getting burned.

Diesel particulate filter

The diesel particulate filter collects soot particles and burns them periodically at high temperatures.

During several minutes of cleaning the following may occur:

  • Temporarily, the engine may run less smoothly.
  • Noises and a slight amount of smoke coming from the exhaust until shortly after the engine is shut down.
  • A somewhat higher engine speed is necessary to reach usual performance.

Mobile communication devices in the vehicle

Mobile communication devices in the vehicle

It is not recommended to use mobile phones, such as mobile phones, in the vehicle interior without a direct connection to an external aerial.

Otherwise, the vehicle's electronics and mobile communication devices can interfere with each other. In addition, there is no assurance that the radiation generated during transmission will be conducted away from the vehicle interior.



When driving on wet or slushy roads, reduce your speed to prevent hydroplaning.

On wet or slushy roads, a wedge of water can form between the tires and road surface.

This phenomenon is referred to as hydroplaning.

It is characterized by a partial or complete loss of contact between the tires and the road surface, ultimately undermining your ability to steer and brake the vehicle.

Driving through water

Observe water level and speed

Do not exceed the maximum water level and maximum speed; otherwise, the vehicle's engine, the electrical systems and the transmission may be damaged.

Drive though calm water only and only if it is not deeper than 19.6 inches/50 cm and at this height, no faster than walking speed, up to 3 mph/5 km/h.

Braking safely

Your vehicle is equipped with ABS as a standard feature.

Applying the brakes fully is the most effective way of braking in situations needed.

Steering is still responsive. You can still avoid any obstacles with a minimum of steering effort.

Pulsation of the brake pedal and sounds from the hydraulic circuits indicate that ABS is in its active mode.

In certain braking situations, the perforated brake discs can cause functional problems.

However, this has no effect on the performance and operational reliability of the brake.

Objects within the range of movement of the pedals

No objects in the area around the pedals

Keep floor mats, carpets, and any other objects out of the pedal area; otherwise, the function of the pedals could be impeded while driving and create the risk of an accident.

Do not place additional floor mats over existing mats or other objects.

Only use floor mats that have been approved for the vehicle and can be properly attached to floor.

Ensure that the floor mats are securely fastened again after they were removed for cleaning, e.g.

Driving in wet conditions When roads are wet, salted, or in heavy rain, press brake pedal ever so gently every few miles.

Ensure that this action does not endanger other traffic.

The heat generated in this process helps dry the brake discs and pads.

In this way braking efficiency will be available when you need it.


Avoid stressing the brakes

Avoid placing excessive stress on the brake system. Light but consistent brake pressure can lead to high temperatures, brakes wearing out and possibly even brake failure.

Do not drive in neutral

Do not drive in neutral or with the engine stopped, as doing so disables engine braking.

In addition, steering and brake assist are unavailable with the engine stopped.

Drive long or steep downhill gradients in the gear that requires least braking efforts. Otherwise the brakes may overheat and reduce brake efficiency.

You can increase the engine's braking effect by shifting down, going all the way to first gear, if needed.

Brake disc corrosion Brake disc corrosion and contamination of the brake pads are favored by:

  • Low mileage.
  • Extended periods when the vehicle is not used at all.
  • Infrequent use of the brakes.

Corrosion will built up when the maximum pressure applied to the brake pads during braking is not reached - thus discs don't get cleaned.

Corrosion buildup on the brake discs will cause a pulsating effect on the brakes in their response - generally that cannot be corrected.

Condensation under the parked vehicle

When using the automatic climate control, condensation water develops collecting underneath the vehicle.

These traces of water under the vehicle are normal.

Storage compartments


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