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BMW X1 SUV goes front-drive. Image by BMW.

BMW X1 SUV goes front-drive
An all-new BMW X1 has been revealed - based on a front-drive chassis.
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Newer articles featuring 2015 BMW X1

2015-07-21: First drive: BMW X1 xDrive25d
2015-06-30: Incoming: BMW X1

What's this all about?

It's the new BMW X1, and actually, a bit of a surprise. When we heard that there was a new version of the compact SUV on the way we assumed it was a midlife facelift of the existing model, but as it turns out, it's completely new and rather impressive looking too.

Are you sure those are the right pics?

Yup, looks much more substantial, doesn't it? That's partly down to BMW's designers' efforts, but also a 53mm increase in overall height, giving the design more presence. It also gives the interior more space, which BMW has used to raise the seat height front and rear, increasing the legroom in the process. The boot, at 505 litres, is 85 litres more capacious than before and, if you browse through the gallery of images, you'll see that the rear seats can slide fore and aft. That's an option; the standard offering splits and folds 40:20:40.

That interior looks smart.

Certainly does, though of course the initial photographs show high specification models. Saying that, the original X1 never looked this good inside. It borrows a lot from other new BMWs such as the 2 Series Active Tourer and the latest, updated, 1 Series. Satnav is standard on all versions and the stylish free-standing colour display for the iDrive system varies in size from 6.5 inches to 8.8 inches optionally. Most desirable of all the X1 variants will be the xLine cars, with their Dakota leather with perforations and contrast stitching - shown in Mocha in our images here.

What are the other trim levels?

Although we won't know pricing until later in the year, BMW UK has confirmed that, above the entry-level version, will be the xLine model mentioned above, Sport Line and M Sport, each with their own distinct colour and material themes inside and out. The M Sport car can be had with 19-inch wheels, for instance, to complement its 'M aerodynamic package'.

And what about under the bonnet?

It's all change in the engine and transmission department, though the list of launch models doesn't indicate what's new. For starters, the X1 is built on a new platform in which the engines are mounted transversely, which means front-wheel drive for sDrive variants. Most offered at launch feature a new four-wheel drive system though, denoted by xDrive badging.

A single petrol X1 is featured, the xDrive20i, though of course the three diesel models are likely to be the most popular. They're the front-drive sDrive18d (150hp, 330Nm, 0-62mph in 9.2 seconds, 127mph, 65.7mpg, 114g/km), the xDrive20d (190hp, 400Nm, 0-62mph in 7.6 seconds, 136mph, 57.6mpg, 128g/km) and the twin-turbocharged xDrive25d (231hp, 450Nm, 0-62mph in 6.6 seconds, 146mph, 56.5mpg, 132g/km). The six-speed manual and eight-speed automatic transmissions have been further developed and the X1 can be had with adaptive damping and a variable ratio steering system optionally.

Any chance of a BMW X1 M or a sportier looking version badged X2?

We don't believe so.

Shane O' Donoghue - 2 Jun 2015

2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.

2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.2015 BMW X1. Image by Max Earey.    - BMW road tests
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