The X3 is to the X5 as a Land Rover Freelander is to a conventional Range Rover. The original model, which was released in 2003, was initially slated for its overly-firm ride, dour styling, and poor off-road performance. On the road though, it was among the sharpest driving SUVs out there. The current model is a much more accomplished package - it handles well, the optional VDC (Variable Damper Control) strikes a good balance between comfort and agility, and the styling is much more appealing. It's still expensive though, so go easy with that options list.