Loaded X1 comes at a pre­mium

Herald Sun - Motoring - - PRESTIGE - CRAIG DUFF craig.duff@news.com.au

BMW is go­ing on the front foot with its front-wheel drive com­pact SUV.

The new X1 will be the most ex­pen­sive of the baby SUVs from Ger­many’s pres­tige trio when it goes on sale in De­cem­ber with a start­ing price of $49,500 for the sDrive 18d.

That com­pares with $47,900 for the base Audi Q3 diesel and $48,300 for the Mercedes-Benz GLA200 CDI.

BMW points to the raft of new fea­tures and up­dated ma­te­ri­als in the X1 as a ma­jor fac­tor be­hind the $3000 jump in the cost of ad­mis­sion to the X1 range, which also ap­plies to the $51,600 sDrive 20i.

Stan­dard gear on all mod­els in­cludes eight-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion, re­vers­ing cam­era, auto-park­ing soft­ware, front and rear park sen­sors, sat­nav with real-time traf­fic up­dates, power tailgate, LED head­lamps and ad­justable rear seats.

There is also the Driv­ing As­sis­tant pack, bundling lane de­par­ture warn­ing and for­ward col­li­sion warn­ing with “light city brak­ing” — the X1 may not avoid a low-speed crash but will dra­mat­i­cally re­duce the sever­ity.

BMW prod­uct plan­ning head Shawn Tice­hurst cites Aus­tralia’s grow­ing in­fat­u­a­tion with SUVs and the new car’s im­proved pack­ag­ing as rea­sons to ex­pect the four-model range to grow.

The all-wheel-drive X1 xDrive 20d and 25i will hit show­rooms next month with the new fea­tures but with­out the price hit of the front-wheel drive duo.

The $56,500 start­ing price of the 20d is a $400 cut on the cur­rent model while the 25i (for­merly known as the 28i) is un­changed at $59,900.

The X1 rolls on a re­vised ver­sion of the Mini’s mod­u­lar chas­sis and use the latest en­gines from the BMW Group.

The xDrive20d (140kW/400Nm) is not only a per­former, as in­di­cated by a 100km/h sprint time of 7.6 sec­onds, but also a lean run­ner, with claimed thirst of just 4.9L/100km.

Step­ping up to the 25i (170kW/350Nm) en­dows a sprint time of 6.5 sec­onds and fuel con­sump­tion of 6.6L.

As the halo car in the range it rides on 19-inch al­loys rather than 18s and is fit­ted with power/heated leather front seats, vari­able sports steer­ing and head-up dis­play.

The first-gen­er­a­tion X1 has sold more than 10,000 in Aus­tralia since its 2010 launch.

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