Delivers the sweet spot
BMW recently introduced the world to a compact SAV. And what’s that? you ask. It’s BMW acronym for “Sport Activity Vehicle.” What’s a Sport Activity Vehicle? It’s whatever you want it to be. Whether you live an active lifestyle or something more mundane, the X1 may be your ideal ride provided your wallet can sustain a $40K hit. If that’s the case, there’s good reason to read on.
Ups and downs
I’m let down by the X1’s exterior appearance. It’s far from unattractive, but I think that BMW could have done better. Look at what Range Rover created under the Evoque nameplate to see what’s possible.
While the exterior of the X1 doesn’t excite me the way I hoped it would when it was announced, the vehicle is well assembled meeting the expectations one would have of a premium marque, and that goes for the cabin as well.
Here you’ll find first-rate materials in use, although sparingly; the cabin is more about business than opulence. Apart from difficulty using the base audio unit, which one would expect to be the most simplistic of accoutrements to administer, I found the X1’s cabin to be well thought-out and notably functional.
Seating up front is remarkably comfortable and supportive, providing a driving position that blends the best of a sports sedan with an SUV. I was particularly fond of the steering wheel. It’s small, thickly padded and feels good in the hands, reinforcing the sporty character of the X1.
Enhancing the practicality of the cabin is a 40/20/40-split rear seat. This arrangement ought to be more widely adopted. In addition to offering more seating-versus-cargo configurations, the setup allows long items to extend between the two outside seating positions
Overall, the cabin is suitably spacious given the compact rating of the X1. I had no issue with head or legroom; it will comfortably transport four adults and a reasonable complement of gear. But there’s more to the ride than comfort, and it comes in the form of spirited performance — after all, this is a BMW.
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