2015 BMW X1

What's new for 2015? The 2015 BMW X1 carries over unchanged.

Small crossover SUVs are great vehicles for small families. They can ferry a few kids to school every day, or can be loaded up with a bit of extra luggage for a weekend road trip. To satisfy all sorts of families, BMW offers all sorts of crossovers, in various shapes and sizes, aiming to have one for each lifestyle. The 2015 BMW X1 is the smallest SUV in its lineup, and while the X1 doesn't offer much in the way of utility, it definitely has "sport" covered. It's an entertaining option that stands out among its rivals.

It all starts with its engines. You might think the standard turbocharged four-cylinder engine is the best choice for fuel economy and you'd be right, but it's actually a spirited engine that delivers swift acceleration. Still, it can't match the entertainment you'll get from BMW's 300-horsepower turbocharged inline-6. Being such a small SUV also helps the X1 feel nimble, whether it's around town or on your favorite back roads. In this way, the X1 definitely remains true to its BMW badge.

Exterior Highlights
Available in sDrive28i, xDrive28i and xDrive35i trim levels. The sDrive indicates rear-wheel drive, while the xDrive indicates all-wheel drive

The 2015 BMW X1 is offered in three trim levels: sDrive28i, xDrive28i and xDrive35i. The sDrive designation indicates rear-wheel drive, while xDrive models are all-wheel drive.

The sDrive28i comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, foglamps, automatic wipers, cruise control, automatic climate control, eight-way manual front seats, "SensaTec" premium vinyl upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and an eight-speaker sound system with a CD player, auxiliary audio jack, HD radio and an iPod/USB audio interface. The xDrive28i adds all-wheel drive and hill descent control.

Along with its more powerful engine, the xDrive35i adds 18-inch wheels, adaptive xenon headlights, LED running lights, a panoramic sunroof, upgraded interior trim and eight-way power front seats (with driver memory settings). These extra items are all available on the 28i models.

There are additional stand-alone options, including an 11-speaker Harman Kardon premium sound system, but most available features are bundled into packages. Note that some must be purchased in combination with others.

The Premium package adds keyless ignition and entry, front seat power lumbar support, auto-dimming mirrors, leather upholstery and satellite radio (along with the panoramic sunroof and power front seats in the 28i models). The Cold Weather package includes heated front seats and a heated steering wheel.

The Technology package includes the iDrive system with an 8.8-inch display, a navigation system, iPhone app integration (including Pandora and Stitcher Internet radio) and BMW Remote Services (which allows both Apple and Android users to lock the car remotely and turn on the climate control, among various other tasks). The Driver Assistance package (which requires the Technology package) adds a rearview camera and front and rear parking sensors. The Ultimate package includes all the features of the Premium, Technology and Driver Assistance packages.

In addition to those packages there's a trio of "Design Lines." The xLine and Sport Line are mostly cosmetic and add items like 18-inch wheels, unique body trim and multi-adjustable sport seats. The M Sport Line features enhancements such as an aero body kit, a sport-tuned suspension, paddle shifters, a higher top speed limiter, multi-adjustable sport seats and cosmetic tweaks such as blackout window frames and unique interior trim.

Clear gauges, sensible ergonomics,, great materials quality, optional iDrive electronics interface, BMW Assist emergency communications system

Cabin quality in the X1 is typical BMW, meaning clear gauges, sensible ergonomics and solid build and materials quality throughout. BMW's optional iDrive electronics interface might seem complicated before you get used to it, but overall, it works quite well for controlling various audio, navigation and smartphone functions, thanks to its straightforward menu design and fast processing times.

The driving position is more SUV than sedan, as you sit high and peer down the X1's sculpted hood. The rear seat is a bit flat to allow it to fold down somewhat flat. With the rear seats up, cargo capacity rates 14.8 cubic feet. Fold them down and space opens up to 47.7 cubes.

Every 2015 BMW X1 comes standard with stability and traction control, antilock disc brakes (with automatic brake drying), front side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, active front-seat head restraints and on xDrive versions, hill descent control. Also standard is the BMW Assist emergency communications system, which provides automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle recovery and on-demand roadside assistance during an included 10-year subscription. Optional equipment includes front and rear parking sensors and a rearview camera, but one must select both the Technology and Driver Assistance packages to get them.

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