BMW has taken a rather large step forward with its all-new X1 compact SUV. It certainly boasts improved styling, comfort and refinement, along with a range of new fuel efficient engines and transmissions. The first-generation X1 was launched in 2009 and has enjoyed global sales of 730,000 units, with 40,000 models sold across Ireland and the UK.

One of the most notable differences in this new X1 over its predecessor is in the quality, feel and spaciousness of the interior. It really feels like you’re driving an X3 in terms of the space and comfort on offer in this new X1. The seating position is raised by 36mm in the front and 64mm for rear seat occupants compared to the previous model. The luggage compartment has increased by 85 litres to 505 litres, this increases to 1,550 litres with the rear seats folded down. Accessing the boot is effortless thanks to the automatic tailgate (standard equipment).


As you’d come to expect with a BMW the quality of all the controls is excellent, there is a more premium feel to this X1 over its precursor. Just some of the standard equipment on all models includes, satellite navigation, Bluetooth and USB connectivity, air conditioning, automatic tailgate, front foglights, keyless ignition, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors, automatic lights and wipers and front and rear isofix attachments.

The iDrive’s display comes as standard with a 6.5-inch colour screen or an optional 8.8-inch freestanding monitor, satellite navigation is included on all models. There are four trim levels offered, SE, xLine, Sport and M Sport. Our test car was finished in the Sport trim which features black BMW Kidney grille bars, air intakes with accents in high-gloss black and underbody protection in black silver. The interior is equipped with black sports seats with red accents (grey accents can be chosen), along with stripes in the interior trim.


Irish customers can choose from one petrol and three diesel variants. The X1 xDrive20i utilises a four-cylinder petrol engine to produce 192hp and 280Nm of torque. The diesel line-up consists of an 18d, 20d and 25d diesel, our test car was the xDrive20d model. It is powered by a 2.0-litre diesel engine with BMW’s TwinPower Turbo technology to produce 190hp and a robust 400Nm of torque. It is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission as standard. It’s a silk-smooth unit that really adds to the driving experience. On all surfaces the X1 impress with impeccable road manners, having all-wheel-drive ability is a reassurance on these wintery mornings. You can switch between driving modes (Comfort, Sport, Eco Pro) on the go with the toggle button beside the gear lever. We found comfort mode offers the optimum driving experience in terms of performance and efficiency for the vast amount of our drives.  


This new X1 is more a complete SUV than the first-generation model and is better equipped to compete against the Audi Q3 and Range Rover Evoque. The key difference for us in this new variant is the improved space and comfort, take one for a test drive, you won’t be disappointed.


Technical Specification

Engine Size – 1995cc

Fuel Type – Diesel

Power – 190hp

Torque – 400Nm

Acceleration (0-100km/h) – 7.6 seconds

Top Speed – 218km/h

Consumption (Combined) – 4.9L/100km

CO2 Emissions – 128g/km

Road Tax – €270

Base Price – €45,000

Price as Tested – €51,425