2016 BMW X1 Preview

Philly Murtha | Jun 04, 2015
  • Second-generation SUV model debuts this fall
  • Based on BMW 2 Series platform
  • Roomier interior with more head and leg room
  • Estimated 15% more cargo area
  • Smaller, more fuel-efficient engine
  • New technology offers safer, better ride and handling and in-vehicle connectivity
  • Initially available only in X1 xDrive28i configuration


BMW has taken the wraps off its redesigned 2016 X1 Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV). The new streamlined small premium SUV, built in Leipzig, Germany, will debut at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. The new X1 SUV utilizes a front-wheel-drive (FWD) platform that is shared with the Mini Cooper. BMW launched its first-generation X1 SAV in 2009 on its rear-wheel-drive (RWD) 1 Series (now discontinued) platform and brought it to the United States as a 2013 model. This fall, the only X1 model to reach U.S. showrooms will be the 2016 X1 xDrive28i, powered by a 2.0-liter, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Pricing will be revealed closer to launch.

Exterior Features

The exterior of the 2016 X1 displays a more angular design, taking cues from BMW's other premium SUVs. The next-generation X1 is slightly shorter, wider, and taller than the outgoing model for a more robust stance, according to BMW. Large kidney-shaped grilles up front and twin round headlights and fog lamps give the new BMW X1 a "distinctive face," BMW says. LED daytime running lights are now standard.

Interior Features

The 2016 BMW X1 interior offers more room and a more upscale look compared with the 2015 X1, offering different types of leather and color combinations in the cabin. Surfaces of the instrument panel and center console controls are angled toward the driver. Power front seats are standard and provide a seating position raised by more than an inch in the front and by more than 2.5 in. in the rear.
A power-folding rear seatback works at the touch of a button inside the luggage compartment. Also, more storage areas and cupholders are included.

Optional Features

A host of innovative options on the new BMW X1 begin with full-LED adaptive headlights, BMW Head-Up Display, and the Driver Assistance Plus safety technologies system. BMW will also offer its M Sport package--available later this year--that features an 8-speed automatic transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters supported by a special steering wheel, sport suspension, and sport seats. A Premium package also will be offered with a larger panorama moonroof, adaptive LED headlights, and a head-up display.

Under the Hood

The only powertrain for the 2016 X1 initially available in the U.S. market will be the 2.0-liter, TwinPower 4-cylinder engine from BMW's new family of modular engines. It is mated with an 8-speed Steptronic automatic transmission. BMW claims the 4-cylinder turbo engine, which produces 228 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque, is the most powerful in its class and will enable the new X1 to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds.

Fuel Economy

The new BMW X1 is said to be 65 lbs. lighter than its predecessor, and BMW claims that the new model, which uses some aluminum components, has a top speed of 130 mph. EPA mileage estimates will be available closer to launch, but BMW says the new X1 will be more efficient than before. For reference, the current 2015 X1 averages 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.


An array of safety systems are available on the new X1, including camera-based assistance systems such as the Driver Assistance Plus package with lane-departure warning, speed limit information, and automatic high beams, as well as frontal-collision and pedestrian-warning mitigation. Also included in the safety package are active cruise control and parking distance control, to make parking maneuvers easier.

BMW also offers a navigation system option for the 2016 X1. With the standard multi-function steering wheel, a destination can be entered by voice command, allowing the driver to keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel. The system includes an 8.8-in. display, instrument cluster with extended features, and a split-screen function, as well as a head-up display.


BMW ConnectedDrive includes the newest version of BMW's head-up display. An optional 8.8-in. control display with touchpad controller will host BMW Online, BMW Apps, remote services, and advanced real-time traffic updates. The ConnectedDrive Services option, which allows the use of BMW's online internet portal, can be integrated with smartphone apps in the vehicle. Standard connected features also include BMW Assist eCall and BMW Teleservices.
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