RX330 vs. X3 vs. MDX

Spent the morning comparison driving the RX330, MDX, and X3. Amazed at how different they were.
The RX330 was by far the most impressive. Smooth, nice handling, good
storage, and very comfortable. About the only negative that really jumped out were the lack of side bolstering in the seats. My wife loved this car.
The MDX was surprising in that I expected it to be a somewhat larger version of the RX330. In fact, it seemed like a smaller version of our Yukon XL. Felt a lot bigger than the RX330 and much more truck-like to drive. The seats felt really strange. Just uncomfortable. Storage space was great. It made the worst impression.
The X3 was the one I wanted to like and hoped my wife would. First thing I noticed was the upholstery looked like leatherette. The salesman said it was leather. Most vinyl-like looking leather I have seen. The auto tranny was strange shifted slowly and unexpectedly, like there was something wrong with it. This was the 3-liter (like my 330i E46), so it good power, but the transmission screwed up the effect. Seats had the same weird last two inches of the seat missing near the seat back that my E46 has, but were otherwise fine.Storage space looked comparable to the RX330. I think the new 325ix Touring when it comes out in a couple of months would be a better choice than the X3 unless one really is going off-road.
The RX330 walked away from the others, in our opinion.
- GRL
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My wife went shopping a year ago, and came to the same conclusion (although she bought a Highlander, which is very similar to the RX 330.) The MDX is about 400lbs heavier and 6" wider and longer than the others; not surprised it felt heavy. She hated the X3's steering, and didn't really like the interior.
Floyd
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GRL wrote:

We thought the same. Bought an RX330. Very nice Mom grocery getter. The problem is she won't drive it and drives the BMW E-39.

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You have an enthusiast "mom".
- GRL

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Forgot to mention that when I told the BMW salesman that my wife liked the RX better and that the X3 was just too "masculine" for her taste, he replied that they've sold 40 X3's in the last couple of months and most go to women. Guys prefer the X5.
Go figure.
- GRL

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Now my E39 driving wife did not like the X3 or X5. She is a long time member of BMW CCA. She really dislikes the Lexus GS 300/400.
\ GRL wrote:

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Watch out for the bad transmission.

version
It
was
with
inches
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Test drove several used 2004's. None had any indication of transmission weirdness.

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