The X2 is brand new for 2018. BMW calls it a Sports Activity Coupe. It’s about three inches shorter and three inches lower than the X1. My first thought when I saw it is that it’s an upscale version of the Subaru Crosstrek. Whatever you call it, sporty crossovers are popular so it’s not surprising BMW is joining the party.
The five-passenger X2 is available in just one trim, the xDrive28i, with a starting price of $36,400 for front-wheel drive. BMW’s all-wheel-drive system and lots of options are available, and they can quickly send the price upwards of 40- or even 50-grand. If you want to stand out, the X2 is available in colors including Galvanic Gold Metallic and Sunset Orange.
The X2 is powered by the same engine found in the X1, a 2.0-liter BMW TwinPower turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with an eight-speed Steptronic transmission. My tester has the M Sport X package which adds Sport Automatic Transmission for faster upshifts and downshifts, and includes gearshift paddles on the steering wheel.
For the most part, the X2 has the nimble driving dynamics you expect in a BMW with enough power for the usual driving scenarios. Acceleration is pretty quick (BMW says it can go from zero to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds), steering is sharp, and the X2 stays planted when cornering. The transmission shifts smoothly and quickly. There are Comfort, Eco Pro and Sport modes so you can tweak driving dynamics. The ride is fairly stiff and you’ll notice bumps on rough roads. In the city, it’s a pleasant daily driver. Visibility to the rear is somewhat hampered by the thick C-pillars.
Fuel efficiency is slightly above average for a luxury subcompact SUV. EPA ratings for my tester are 21 mpg city and 31 mpg highway with a combined rating of 25. I got ?? during my week with a mix of city and highway driving.
The interior isn’t quite as nice as you might expect in a Bimmer. Many materials do have a nice look and feel, and decorative stitching add visual appeal, but there are some hard plastics. Leatherette is the standard seating, not real leather. One fun touch: you can choose the color of the interior ambient lighting from orange, lilac, mint, bronze, blue or white. Front and rear seats are comfortable. Legroom in the rear seats is a bit tight, especially for taller adults, as you’d expect in a small vehicle.
Standard features include automatic climate control, a seven-speaker audio system, a USB port, Bluetooth, and the iDrive infotainment system with a 6.5-inch screen.
The Convenience Tier ($2,350) adds keyless entry, panoramic moonroof, satellite radio and more. The Premium Tier ($4,950) adds a head-up display, a heated steering wheel, and an upgraded iDrive system with a 8.8-inch touchscreen and navigation. Other features can be added individually including heated front seats, a 12-speaker harman kardon audio system, Wi-Fi hot spot, wireless phone charging, and several driver assistance technologies including head-up display, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, parallel park assist, and front and rear parking sensors. Apple CarPlay is available but not Android Auto.
The infotainment system with its touchpad controller takes some getting used to. You may prefer the optional touch screen over the controller. The X2 offers Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto.
Cargo space is pretty good for the class. The X2 has 21.6 cubic feet of storage behind the rear seats and 50.1 cubes with the rear seats folded, plus extra storage under the floor panel in the cargo area. A power liftgate is standard.
Good driving dynamics
Lots of available driver assistance technologies
Unique appearance for a BMW, especially with the Gold Metallic paint!
Decent cargo space for the class
Price can climb in a hurry
Interior not as upscale as you might expect
Infotainment system takes getting used to
Legroom is tight in rear seats
Android Auto not available
My tester starts at $39,400. Driving Assistance Package is $700. The M SportX package is $4,650 and adds Sport Automatic Transmission, power folding mirrors, universal garage door opener, keyless entry, panoramic moonroof, lumbar support, satellite radio, 19-inch Y-spoke wheels, sport seats, Aluminum hexagon trim with pearl-effect chrome, M steering wheel, M Sport X exterior package, shadowline exterior trim and Anthacite headliner. M Sport Suspension is $400. Park Distance Control is $800. Apple CarPlay compatability is $300. Wireless charging is $500. Harman/kardon premium audio system is $875. M rear spoiler is $150. Destination charge is $995 bringing the grand total to $50,920.
The X2 is a solid new offering from BMW and will appeal to shoppers who want a Bimmer subcompact utility vehicle. At the same time, it’s spendy for a compact crossover, and buyers may decide they’re better off with the capable and less costly X1.