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2016 BMW X1: Frankfurt Auto Show

What Is It?

The 2016 BMW X1 is a newly redesigned second-generation version of BMW’s popular entry-level X1 crossover. First released in 2013, the X1 had only a short run before the arrival of the new second-generation model, which offers a more traditional look and larger sizing.

On the outside, the new X1 looks a lot more like the larger X3 and X5 SUVs than today’s X1 model, which has more of a station-wagon-like appearance. The new model features a taller roof, a higher window line and other design cues, such as lights, wheels and BMW’s unique front grille, that help the SUV blend in more closely to other members of the BMW family. Inside, the interior is updated with a new look and more space for both passengers and cargo.

Under the hood, U.S.-bound versions of the X1 will offer a 228-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder in the X1 xDrive28i model. It remains to be seen whether or not BMW will carry over the current X1’s slow-selling 300-hp 6-cylinder, currently dubbed the X1 xDrive35i. Although an 8-speed automatic transmission remains standard, the X1 makes one other powertrain change: Formerly optional all-wheel drive is now standard across the board.

As for equipment, the X1 offers a few advantages over its predecessor, including a larger panoramic sunroof, available LED headlights, adaptive cruise control, optional 19-inch alloy wheels and more.

How Much?

Largely due to its newly standard all-wheel drive, the X1 gets a price boost for 2016. Base models now start around $35,700 with shipping, compared to last year’s MSRP of $32,100.

When Can You Get It?

Fall 2015

Add It to Your Shopping List Because…

The 2016 BMW X1 is the first subcompact luxury SUV to earn a full redesign. In fact, it’s now entering its second generation just as many rivals, including Audi and Mercedes, are debuting their very first models. That almost certainly gives the X1 a leg up over the competition, since the 2016 X1 will likely be newer and more advanced than its predecessor — which itself was hardly an outdated dinosaur. Drivers will also want to check out the latest X1 for its improved passenger room, which looks like a fairly significant increase compared to last year’s model.

Other Cars to Consider

2016 Audi Q3 — Audi’s new Q3 slots between the X1 and the X3 in BMW’s lineup. It offers reasonable pricing, but it’s a bit behind the BMW in terms of technology.

2016 Buick Encore — If you want a small luxury SUV on an even tighter budget than the X1 allows, you may want to consider the Buick Encore. It has some deficits compared to the BMW — such as build quality, power and equipment — but it touts high-end features and a luxury brand name at a low price.

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class — Mercedes’ subcompact crossover offers excellent fuel efficiency, reasonable pricing and available all-wheel drive. But it’s smaller than the new X1, and a bit more station-wagonish.

Used BMW X3 — If you like the X1 but need something a little larger, consider BMW’s bigger X3 crossover. It shares a lot of similarities with the X1, save for a roomier interior and more available engine choices. But since prices start at a steeper $39,500 with shipping, you may want to consider a used model.

See all 2015 Frankfurt Auto Show articles

Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More

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