Premium SUVs are one of the vital automotive trade’s greatest money cows this present day, and is the reason why the German ‘big three’ seem to be so obsessive about them. Mercedes has at least seven SUVs in its vary, with Audi and BMW now not a long way at the back of – and all 3 have extra at the method within the subsequent 12 months.
With the collection of typical SUVs available on the market already beautiful saturated, this trio of manufacturers is popping to the coupé-SUV area of interest – offering high-riding vehicles with extra svelte designs to attraction to a more youthful target market. And that’s the place BMW’s newest type, the X2, is available in. We’ve pushed the auto on European roads for the primary time forward of its release in UK sellers in the following few months.
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As with BMW’s conventional ‘Series’ vary, the X line-up makes use of abnormal numbers for the extra typical, sensible bodystyles (such because the X1 and X3) or even numbers for sportier, coupé-like variants. The X2, then, is a smaller sibling of the X4 and X6, aiming to overcome the extra fashion-focused finish of the small crossover marketplace along vehicles such because the Mercedes GLA.
The styling is certain to divide opinion, however we will’t deny it has a variety of presence. It’s in fact moderately smaller than the X1, with shorter overhangs, a small glasshouse and a 70mm decrease roofline giving it a rakish, muscular glance.
Brighter colors, such because the Galvanic Gold of our take a look at type, additionally assist so as to add the persona wanted on this market. It’s been watered down handiest moderately from the concept that first noticed at 2016’s Paris Motor Show, moving over unfashionable main points such because the BMW brand fastened at the C-pillar.
Climb within and issues are just a little extra acquainted. Much of the switchgear and format are borrowed from the X1, which is not any dangerous factor in our eyes. The design is sexy, but it surely’s additionally ordered and logical to make use of, whilst the variability of cast, plush-feeling fabrics is tricky to fault. The X2 undoubtedly has the measure of the dated GLA, each on the subject of ergonomics and are compatible and end.
There are two notable variations between this automotive and the X1 within, then again. The first is the using place; BMW has selected to present the brand new type hatchback-like, low-slung seating up entrance to strengthen the driving force’s feeling of sportiness. It’s undoubtedly becoming with the auto’s temporary, however signifies that the ones purchasing an SUV to lord it over different motorists will likely be sorely dissatisfied. Even so, the seat is relaxed and supportive, and there’s a variety of adjustment.
The different major distinction is handiest noticeable whilst you attempt to get within the again, as a result of get right of entry to isn’t as beneficiant as it's within the X1. Once within, despite the fact that, there’s a related quantity of legroom, and whilst headroom is at extra of a top class because of that roof, six-footers can nonetheless sit down very easily. The 470-litre boot is handiest 35 litres down at the X1’s, too, even though there’s a excessive load lip to barter.
From release, the X2 will likely be introduced with 4 trim ranges in the United Kingdom, together with our M Sport X take a look at type, however, bizarrely, patrons will to begin with get handiest the only engine selection. This is BMW’s acquainted 2.Zero-litre diesel, which delivers 187bhp and 400Nm of torque, and is attached to the corporate’s confirmed xDrive all-wheel-drive machine.
It’s robust and versatile during the rev vary, gives first rate total refinement and claims decent economic system figures. But the diesel stops wanting being actually a laugh at the highway, main us to signify that customers could be looking forward to one of the vital lighter, less expensive front-wheel-drive petrol choices, because of arrive in showrooms right here later this yr.
The X2 stocks its chassis with the X1 – which is already a fine-handling automotive – however engineers have stiffened up the frame and suspension to make it really feel sharper and extra attractive from at the back of the wheel. It additionally advantages from a decrease centre of gravity, and is moderately lighter. The result's that the brand new type drives way more like a hatchback than an SUV, with an agile and composed really feel thru corners.
The fast, direct steerage doesn’t supply a lot in the best way of comments, however turn-in is certain. Our M Sport X take a look at automotive additionally advantages from a 10mm decrease trip top, which additional contributes to its robust frame keep watch over.
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There is a trade-off, then again. The trip has a more impregnable edge to it, in particular when travelling at low speeds and with our type’s 19-inch alloys. It’s by no means crashy or uncomfortable, however occupants aren’t remoted from the outside as deftly as they're within the X1. Road noise could also be noticeable, so we’d counsel opting for a specification with a smaller wheel possibility.
Another explanation why to not opt for this M Sport X trim is the fee. At just below £38,000, the auto is not just knocking at the door of SUVs from the category above, it’s additionally in direct festival with a lot sooner and costlier efficiency hatchbacks. In a extra modest spec with a petroleum engine, the X2 may just be offering a profitable mix of fashion, driving force attraction and value.
New BMW X2 SUV 2018 review