The X2 is a new name, and an additional model in the BMW range, without a direct predecessor. It is a lower, sleeker, sportier, and slightly less roomy counterpart to the X1. You know, like the X4 is to the X3, or the X6 to the X5.
It is a crossover for people who are willing to compromise on back seat and boot space (though not that much). In return, they get a slightly sportier drive and sleeker looks.
The tail is shorter and more vertical than theirs, to make it more parkable because it is aimed at urban people. And BMW has simplified the surfaces along the sides. At the back, an outer plastic skin on the tailgate allows its surface to be flush with the bumper. Oh, and the tail lamps have a new-to-BMW bordering crease. Up front, the kidney grilles have been effectively inverted, wider at the base than the top to make the thing apparently sniff the road.
Under the hood, BMW bases the X2 on the entry-level X1 model. They all come with a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine making 228 horsepower between 5,000 rpm and 6,000 rpm and 258 pound-feet of torque from 1,450 rpm to 4,500 rpm. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, and with the M Sport X Package it gains a Sport mode and paddle shifters. Automatic engine stop/start technology aims to improve fuel economy, which comes in at an EPA estimate of 25 mpg in combined driving.
On the road, the X2’s ride is firm, and feels a bit heavy in a succession of tight bends. But that said, for a crossover the X2 is really very agreeable and everything happens as you’d expect.
Let’s take a look inside. Though the lead-in version comes with more conventional black cloth or a couple of shades of leather, the Sport, M Sport, and especially M Sport X trims have more colorful clothes.
I have to say, the dashboard is a model of beauty and smart design. The standard infotainment has all you need, including detailed live traffic and connected services. The top-end model has a bigger screen. Want Apple CarPlay?
You have to pay extra, but when you do the integration is brilliant; it even works over Bluetooth if you are wire-averse.
The driving position likewise is well arranged and adjustable, if not very high off the ground. Is this really an SUV?
Rear room is surprisingly useful — where passengers get vents, a 12V outlet, decent speakers, and an armrest. The trunk’s pretty good too, with a deep belly below the floor adding to its gulp.
Prices start at $37,395 for the X2 sDrive28i with front-wheel drive and no options. Or, you can pay $53,670 for the X2 xDrive28i with Premium trim, the M Sport X Package, and all of the extras.
The X2 is refined, as good to drive as any of them, and decently made and equipped. On top of that it manages to serve up a zingy new style that hardly compromises its space or usefulness. The world can’t get enough of BMW’s crossovers and this shows why.
Grant Miller is the publisher of Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277 or via email at Grant@CommunityNewspapers.com.