BMW raises desirability of its smallest SAV
Pronounced design revisions – particularly a new, bold, and visually striking BMW grille with the kidneys now merging in the centre – a high level of versatility, and a host of cutting-edge equipment features increases the appeal of the X1, the smallest Sport Activity Vehicle in the BMW arsenal.
The midlife model update is also an exercise in future-proofing the X1, as all its petrol- and diesel engines will meet the EU6d‑temp exhaust emissions standard at launch in Europe. The X1 sDrive16d and BMW X1 xDrive25d already fulfil the EU6d norm. The power generated by the TwinPower three- and four-cylinder engines translated xDrive intelligent all‑wheel drive or front-wheel-drive into dynamic performance and driving pleasure, according to BMW.
Each of the model variants – from the base X1 to xLine, Sport Line, and M Sport – has been given a standalone visual presence tailored to its character profile. The X1 M Sport is particularly athletic-looking, courtesy of a lowered M Sport suspension, BMW Individual High-gloss Shadow Line trim, and M Aerodynamics package.
Adaptive LED headlights, a bumper with integrated LED foglamps, and larger front air intakes are now incorporated and the new design is further enhanced by three new exterior colours – Jucaro Beige metallic, Misano Blue metallic (exclusively for the M Sport), and the ultra-exclusive BMW Individual Storm Bay metallic – and four new wheel designs.
New engines, PHEV models
Overseas the updated X1 line-up now comprises 16 engine and transmission combinations, including two new powerplant options – an entry-level three-cylinder 1.6-litre turbodiesel in the X1 sDrive16d delivering 85 kW and 270 Nm of torque, available with either a six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, and an uprated two-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel in the xDrive25d, developing 170 kW and 450 Nm of torque – good enough to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in a rapid 6.6 seconds.
This top-performing variant with an eight-speed Steptronic transmission epitomises the multi-faceted ability of the X1 series in anticipation of the arrival of the first plug-in hybrid models outside China. The X1 xDrive25e – due for production in March next year – will be fitted with the latest, fourth-generation BMW PHEV technology, including a 9.7 kWh battery. The X1 xDrive25e with 92 kW/220 Nm TwinPower engine and electric drive output of 70 kW and 165 Nm of torque, will be able to cover over 50 km on electric power alone.
The changes inside the new X1 is announced by a new two-tone “X1” LED projection greeting you as you open the front door. An 8.8-inch central display screen with iDrive 6, navigation, and Apple CarPlay is standard, and a new electronic gear selector complete the interior updates.
Production of the new X1 is expected to start from this month and it should go on sale late this year and reach South Africa early in 2020. While the local line-up has not been confirmed, the current sDrive18i, sDrive20i, and sDrive20d will probably remain, while the xDrive20d could be replaced by the xDrive25d. Whether the sDrive16d will make it here, also remains to be seen …
Text: Paul van Gass | Images: BMW AG