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1307 2013 Bmw X1 Introduction
four seasons long-term tests

2013 BMW X1 - Four Seasons Introduction

Martyn Goddard
#BMW, #X1
2014 BMW X1 reviews to date

We've been waiting for some time to get a BMW X1 crossover for a Four Seasons test. It's not that our order was lost in the mail or that we picked a long list of zany special-order options. We've simply been waiting for the X1 with the rest of North America. The X1 has been on sale abroad since 2009, and it's been a hit -- so much so that BMW delayed bringing the X1 to the United States until manufacturing capacity could be increased.

But, as they say, good things come to those who wait. We had our first crack behind the wheel of a federalized X1 last summer, and we found that it didn't drive like a typical crossover. Instead, its tactile, communicative steering and agile frame reminded us of some of our favorite rear-wheel-drive BMW coupes and sedans -- no surprise, considering the X1 itself is derived from the previous iteration of the BMW 3-series. Better yet, North American X1s are the only ones offered with BMW's 300-hp, turbocharged 3.0-liter I-6 shoehorned into the engine compartment.

Despite that unique engine option, we opted to live with four-cylinder power for the next year. Our 2014 X1 xDrive28i is powered by the same 240-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 as our former Four Seasons 2012 BMW 328i sedan. Here, it's mated to a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission and BMW's xDrive all-wheel-drive system.

Why choose four over six? Pricing, for starters -- an xDrive35i is nearly $6000 more expensive than an X1 xDrive28i. Fuel economy was another consideration. Our X1 xDrive28i is EPA rated at 22 mpg city, 33 mpg highway, and 26 mpg combined. The X1 xDrive35i manages just 18 mpg city, 27 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined. However, as enthusiasts, we chose this configuration for its power steering hardware: the xDrive28i uses traditional hydraulic steering assist, which typically provides better feel.

A 2014 X1 xDrive28i starts at a surprisingly reasonable $32,500, but adding options can quickly escalate that figure. Our X1's $41,075 price tag -- which includes $925 in destination fees -- is proof. The most pricey option was the Ultimate Package: for $6150, the package adds a slew of niceties, including leather-clad seating, push-button start and entry, a rear-view camera and park assist, auto-dimming mirrors, ambient interior lighting, a panoramic moonroof, navigation and BMWConnect services, and a year's subscription to SiriusXM satellite radio. The deep midnight blue metallic paint ran an extra $550, and Servotronic -- BMW-speak for variable-assist power steering -- added another $225. To silence those who kvetched about sitting on ice-cold leather in winter with our Four Seasons 2011 BMW 535i, we also ponied up $700 for the cold weather package, which adds heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, and retractable headlamp washers.

Will we find ourselves as enamored with our X1 several months down the line, or will we regret not springing for the larger inline-six? Time -- twelve months, specifically -- will tell.

2014 BMW X1 Specs
  • Overview
  • powertrain
  • chassis
  • measurements
  • equipment
  • options
Body style 4-door hatchback
Accommodation 5-passenger
Construction Steel unibody
Base price (with dest.)$33,425
Price As tested $41,075
Engine 16-valve DOHC turbocharged I-4
Displacement 2.0 liters (122 cu in)
Power 241 hp @ 5000-6500 rpm
Torque 258 (369 w/overboost) lb-ft @ 1250-4800 rpm
Transmission 8-speed automatic
Drive All-wheel
EPA Fuel Economy 22/33/26 (city/hwy/combined)
Steering Hydraulically assisted
Lock-to-lock 3.3 turns
Turning circle 38.7 ft
Suspension, Front Strut-type, coil springs
Suspension, Rear Multilink, coil springs
Brakes F/R Vented discs
Wheels 17-inch aluminum
Tires Goodyear Eagle LS2
Tire size 225/50R-17 94H
Headroom F/R 41.3/39.7 in
Legroom F/R 41.4/34.9 in
Shoulder room F/R 55.0/54.6 in
Wheelbase 108.7 in
Track F/R 59.1/60.2 in
L x W x H 176.5 x 70.8 x 60.8 in
Passenger capacity 98.0 cu ft
Cargo capacity 27.6/63.3 cu ft
Weight 3726 lb
Weight dist. F/R 50.6/49.4 %
Fuel capacity 16.6 gal
Est. fuel range 430 miles
Fuel grade 91 octane (premium unleaded)
Standard Equipment
  • Halogen fog lights
  • LED taillights
  • Matte-black roof rails
  • Rain-sensing windshield wipers
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Leatherette-trimmed interior
  • Tilt-and-telescopic steering column
  • Cruise control
  • Bluetooth
  • USB port
  • Automatic climate control
  • Adjustable front armrest
Packages & Options
  • Midnight Blue metallic paint
  • $550
  • Cold weather package
  • $700
  • Retractable headlights washer Heated steering wheel and front seats
  • Servotronic steering
  • $250
  • Ultimate package
  • $6150
  • Homelink Keyless entry and ignition Rearview camera Panoramic sunroof Auto-dimming rearview mirror and exterior mirrors Power front seats w/lumbar support Front and rear parking assist Interior ambient lighting Navigation Voice control SiriusXM satellite radio and traffic w/one-year trial subscription BMW Online and BMW Apps
I can't tell whether I've seen one or not since the X1, X3, and X5 all look the same, just differing in size.  $41,000 is steep for a small truck, I guess it being a BMW gives the owner bragging rights over the drivers of Honda, Kia, and Toyotas.  For my money if I were to buy a truck, I'd get the Ford Escape, nicer looking and about $16,000 cheaper.  
I got to drive essentially the same (equipment-wise) car just yesterday for altogether about an hour, mostly around town but also for a short stint in a highway... and I loved it! This car was pretty new as well, a 15k miles + 4 month old service loaner. I was surprised by the handling, the smoothness (even the auto stop-start didn't bother me _that_ much) and the overall quality in BMW's more or less cheapest offering (my daily driver being an '08 135i). My client advisor said the X1 has been very popular which actually struck me as funny because I've personally seen VERY few on the road.
Mitchell Leitman
Just a friendly FYI.  The X1 may be new to the USA, but not to North America.  We've had it here in Canada for two model years now and for at least as long in sunny Mexico.

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