Oh great, just what we need, another SUV. Even if it’s small, and a BMW, I’m not sure if America needed more option on its SUV menu. Anyway, it’s official per the folks at BMW, the X1 small SUV will be in America by 2011.
The BMW X1 planned debut in the United States in 2011 will offer traditional rear-wheel drive and the BMW termed xDrive all-wheel drive configurations. Not only will you get the 2-by and 4-by options, there will also be a variety of gasoline and diesel powertrain choices. Just what those choice will be exactly, BMW is staying mum about due to the ” … rapidly evolving US market demands, fuel prices, and regulatory standards.” Which sounds like a heck of a dodge to be making, what with the length of product planning cycles and all that, but that’s what we have to go with for now. Naturally, you can expect further word and big press announcements when BMW finally decides what engines and drivetrains we’ll get.
What we do know is that the X1 will bow in Europe before it does here, and we also know what the Euros will be getting.
Continental types will get a choice of four engines – one gasoline and three diesels – and will be available in rear-wheel drive or with the BMW xDrive all-wheel drive thingo. BMW says the Euro version of the X1 will get up to 45.2 miles per US gallon, which we’re assuming is for the diesel variant with the 1.8 liter oil burner. That’s pretty good mileage, considering how boxy the little guy is. Also, said diesel will top out at 124mph, which is not hugely impressive, but again, there’s that whole box/aerodynamics thing, not to mention that’s a pretty small engine to be pushing it along.
Once it hits the showrooms and the streets of places like Munich and London and Paris, we’ll be able to get a better read on what we’ll be getting here, but essentially, it looks like the X1 will be just like the company’s X3 (which is just like X5) only smaller (in both cases). What that means is a boxy, go-anywhere kind of ride with lots of internal flexibility. Seats crammed everywhere Bavarians can cram them, most, if not all, of which, will fold up or down or just plain get out of the way so you can carry people, or things, but (given the diminutive size of the X1) not people AND things at the same time. But if two of you are going camping, say, the X1 looks like it could be a good choice.
And even thought it’s the “entry level” BMW ute, expect it to come with a bunch of techy gizmos in the dash and in various processing units tucked away under the bonnet to monitor and control things like traction to all the driven wheels, and breaking and roll stability and the like.
No, we have no idea on pricing … be given the size of the thing, you can expect that it will have to go head to head with SUVs like Foresters and smaller Toyota offerings, so it should be cheap-ish, but it will still draw BMW prices (i.e. not that cheap).
When we know more, you’ll know more.
Here’s BMW’s press release:
THE BMW X1 CONFIRMED FOR UNITED STATES IN 2011.
* Press Kit
Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey – July 1, 2009 – It was confirmed today that the BMW X1 is planned to debut in the United States in calendar year 2011. The X1 has been conceived with the flexibility to offer traditional rear-wheel drive and xDrive all-wheel drive configurations, as well as a wide variety of gasoline and diesel powertrain choices. In light of rapidly evolving US market demands, fuel prices, and regulatory standards, elements of the X1\’s US launch plan, including engine and drivetrain configurations, will be forthcoming closer to the time of launch.
The BMW X1 will debut in Europe this fall with a choice of four engines – one gasoline and three diesels – and will be available in rear-wheel drive and xDrive all-wheel drive configurations. The X1 will set new benchmarks in the premium compact segment for efficiency, comfort, utility, and of course driving dynamics. Achieving up to 5.2 L/100km (45.2 miles per US gallon) on the European test cycle, the BMW Advanced Diesel-powered X1 sDrive18d will provide remarkable fuel efficiency while still achieving a top speed of 200km/h (124mph). Each drivetrain choice for the X1 will showcase the latest results of BMW\’s EfficientDynamics engineering strategy, which is focused to reduce emissions and consumption while enhancing the performance expected of any BMW.
BMW Group In America
BMW of North America, LLC has been present in the United States since 1975. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC began distributing vehicles in 2003. The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars; DesignworksUSA, a strategic design consultancy in California; a technology office in Silicon Valley and various other operations throughout the country. BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South Carolina is part of BMW Group\’s global manufacturing network and is the exclusive manufacturing plant for all X5 Sports Activity Vehicles and X6 Sports Activity Coupes. The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 338 BMW passenger car centers, 335 BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 142 BMW motorcycle retailers, 83 MINI passenger car dealers, and 30 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers. BMW (US) Holding Corp., the BMW Group\’s sales headquarters for North America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.