really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
26,244 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2012 BMW X3 engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2012 BMW X3:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2012 BMW X3 Owner Comments

problem #5

Feb 082018


  • 60,300 miles


I was have issues with the vehicle hesitating and jerking, and generally not operating as expected. I took it in to be checked as I was concerned for operating it safely. The dealership indicated that it requires a software patch, as their is a code error, but they will only fix it if I pay for the patch. I told them that if it is a patch that seems like a recall - software is not hardware, software does not just stop working if it is good to begin with. If we allow car dealers to make us pay for patches when they mess up software we will all be paying hundreds and thousands of dollars for their coding errors going forward as the technology continues to innovate. I am all for innovation, but I should not be paying for their coding error. My car worked a few months ago, I took it in for service under warranty for a different issue, they did work to the onboard software that likely caused this issue, and now that it is out of warranty they have decided that is my problem to fix what they broke. This is a precedent that I do not think we should allow auto makers to set. A car is not a pc that we replace in 4 years - it cost exponentially more. When microsoft requires us to upgrade or they will not patch anymore it is on a pc that cost $1-2K at max, we are talking about a much larger investment and BMW should not be allowed to just stop fixing their code and charging consumers for errors that are potential safety concerns. I do not care if the code is original or installed at my last service visit. Something is seriously wrong with this picture. I would feel different if I had some custom modification, then I think they could blame me for hacking it, but I did not do so, therefore I should not be penalized.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #4

Aug 012014

X3 6-cyl

  • 24,920 miles
In a single sitting vehicle in park, engine revved to 2500 then to 3500 and then to redline (approx 7500rpm). I shut down the engine and waited 5 minutes. Started engine and shifted to reverse. Engine revved to 2500 and I immediately shut down engine. Waited 10 minutes and tried again. After a period of idling proceeded to shift into drive and all was normal.

- Henrico, VA, USA

problem #3

Sep 242013

X3 6-cyl

  • 6,000 miles
2012 BMW X3. At a stop with foot on brake, car uncontrollably suddenly surges forward at full throttle causing crash. This has happened twice resulting in accidents both times and causing severe damage to front end of car. Fortunately nobody was in front of car or the unthinkable would happen. I have called the dealer and they claim no other incidents like this have happened. The lead technician also said there were no tsb's relating to this issue. I have called BMW North America and they are looking into this issue and will advise within 1-3 days.

- Huntington Beach, CA, USA

problem #2

Jan 262012


  • 30,000 miles
Our X3 new X3 has surged violently ahead on two occasions now, on one occasion with foot on brake. BMW are denying any other examples of this problem exist, which by viewing this website clearly is not the case. I encourage all that have had this problem to lodge an official complaint to cause a full recall of this dangerous design flaw. Please note that we are in australia, and that BMW in germany are denying any knowledge of this problem.

- Adelaide, AL, USA

problem #1

Nov 012012

X3 6-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
We stopped for a light and the car started to accelerate while your foot is on the brake. The RPM gauge went up to around 3500 and the car was extremely hard to keep from going forward. This happened several times, the car was brought in for diagnostics but they could not find anything wrong. It happened recently and we are taking the car in again to try to resolve the problem.

- Woodside , NY, USA

Not what you are looking for?