BMW shows off its entry level SUV at the Frankfurt motor show
17 September 2009

BMW has officially launched its X1 at the Frankfurt motor show.

The BMW X1 is the car that will, in effect, replace the X3 at the base of BMW’s SUV range when the second generation of that model arrives next year.

See the full high-res BMW X1 image gallery here

Due on sale in the UK in October at a starting price of around £24,500, the X1 will offer buyers the choice between standard rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive — something that has prompted BMW officials to describe it as “more a crossover than an off-roader”.

See all the BMW X1 reviews and news

Read our BMW X1 prototype first drive

This is also backed up in the X1’s estate car-like styling. It eschews the upright, rugged look of traditional SUVs for a relatively low and rakish profile that carries elements of the German car maker’s latest design lineage. There’s a large kidney grille incorporated into an enormous front bumper and a deeply etched swage line drawn in the flanks.

The introduction of the X1 has been made possible in part by a decision to take the X3 further upmarket. As it stands, the two cars are remarkably similar in size; the X1 is just 116mm shorter, 57mm narrower and 130mm lower than the X3, at 4454mm long, 1798mm wide and 1545mm high.

The X1 will come with the choice of five different engines, although not all will be available from the outset of UK sales. On the petrol side are a 141bhp 2.0-litre four-cylinder unit and a range-topping 258bhp 3.0-litre straight six. The six-cylinder engine delivers 0-62mph acceleration in 6.2sec and a top speed of 127mph.

On the diesel side of the range, there are three 2.0-litre, four-cylinder engines with 141bhp, 175bhp and, in twin-turbocharged guise, 201bhp. The most modest of those three powerplants is claimed to return combined-cycle fuel consumption of 54mpg and emit just 136g/km of CO2.

The base petrol and bottom two diesels come with the choice of either rear or four-wheel drive, while the remainder are four-wheel drive exclusively. Gearbox choices include a standard six-speed manual or, depending on the engine sitting up front, an optional six-speed automatic with shift paddles on the face of the steering wheel.

The X1 sits on modified underpinnings from the 3-series, with MacPherson strut (front) and multi-link (rear) suspension, a 2760mm wheelbase and track widths of 1500mm up front and 1529mm at the rear.

Unlike the second-generation X3 and the existing X5 and X6 — all of which will be produced together in BMW’s Spartanburg factory in North America — the X1 will be assembled at BMW’s Leipzig factory in Germany, alongside the 1-series and 3-series.

No official sales targets have been revealed, although Autocar understands that the initial installed capacity is for up to 100,000 X1s per year.

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Our Verdict

BMW X1

The BMW X1 is fine to drive, but buyers looking for premium feel may be better served by rivals' offerings

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Comments
61

1 July 2009

I think it looks good. On some other websites it is shown with bigger wheels in a brown colour which look suprisingly good too. I like the nod to the original X5 on the flanks and I think the rear lights give a hint of what the new 3 touring will look like.

A vast improvement on the X3

1 July 2009

I know that very shortly there will be a whole string of people saying its hideous etc.

So.........to kick off on a positive note i think it looks really good, modern, stylish and handsome. BMW`s styling is leading the way these days and i would love to own one in a few years when its shed some value. A long wait i think...........

1 July 2009

BORING

1 July 2009

Wow. The front will probably only be bearable in black. Satnav integration not as nice as on last BMW cars (X5/X6, 7 series). Back nice, though quite Audi-ish. Profile very impressive, if not pretty, but long bonnet typical for 1series bold look. Will probably bee priced very high, but still sell. More style than the rest of the small SUV set and will probably drive circles around them. Perfect car for sporty, status-conscious, but not too pretentious empty-nesters.

1 July 2009

I like it, the only downer I have on it is they claim it is an "SUV" looks like what the 1 series should have been from the start.

1 July 2009

what's that noise? the sound of someone shooting the LRX's fox.

1 July 2009

To me its ugly, it looks like someone stuck some bits together; it does not look a complete design; I do not see BMW leading the way with design (quite the opposite) and would say Audi has had a much larger impact than BMW.

At £24K, its over priced, its too small, too ugly (sorry to say again) and just is not really anything of anything; its a nothing; I genuinely do not think they will sell many at all, I really do not and at £24K its way too expensive.

I personally think BMW have totally lost the plot, its like they are only firing on two cylinders from a 6 cylinder engine; to me this unit looks like too much of a comprimise which is why it looks odd...it looks really cheap and really tacky.

Put it at the side of a Kuga......X1 is no competition.....the Kuga wins hands down; I really do not think this X1 will sell very well at all anywhere.

1 July 2009

£24k for something that lacks ability and is below the X3 in the range is a mistake.

Not a fan of the looks, think the Kuga is a step forward over it and for £24k I would rather have a Freelander.

LRX will kill it is it ever gets here in time...

Global Warming.. My Rs

1 July 2009

[quote North]

To me its ugly, it looks like someone stuck some bits together; it does not look a complete design; I do not see BMW leading the way with design (quite the opposite) and would say Audi has had a much larger impact than BMW.

At £24K, its over priced, its too small, too ugly (sorry to say again) and just is not really anything of anything; its a nothing; I genuinely do not think they will sell many at all, I really do not and at £24K its way too expensive.

I personally think BMW have totally lost the plot, its like they are only firing on two cylinders from a 6 cylinder engine; to me this unit looks like too much of a comprimise which is why it looks odd...it looks really cheap and really tacky.

Put it at the side of a Kuga......X1 is no competition.....the Kuga wins hands down; I really do not think this X1 will sell very well at all anywhere.

[/quote]

North, I'm getting negative vibes from you towards this car. Am I correct in my assessement of your take on the X1?

1 July 2009

That has to be one of the fugliest cars i have ever seen, BMW really need to be looking at Land Rover and Jaguar for looks, or maybe Kia and Hyundai as there cars are far better looking....

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