2018 BMW X2The new BMW X2, Munich’s rival to the Range Rover Evoque, has been revealed at last – ahead of UK sales starting in a matter of just weeks. The new BMW X2, an all-new addition to its SUV range, is priced from £33,980 at launch. Deliveries begin in 2018.

The X2 is a sportier alternative to the BMW X1. It’s based on the same platform, but is 20mm shorter and over 70mm lower. BMW highlights its short overhangs, exaggerated coupe roofline and slim windows as contrasts to the more practical X1 small SUV.

It also has an all-new approach to the famous BMW kidney grille. The base is wider at the bottom than the top, which the firm says makes it seem broader and sportier. A suitably pumped-up bumper enhances this further.

2018 BMW X2

Something else new appears at the side – a BMW roundel sitting behind the trademark Hofmeister kink in the rear C-pillar. This is a carry-over from the concept car, first seen at the Paris Motor Show in 2016.

The BMW X2 will be sold in four model variants: SE, Sport, M Sport and M Sport X. As standard, SE gets 17-inch alloys, but 10 more alternatives are available; M Sport and M Sport X get 19-inch wheels as standard and buyers can go as large as 20-inches.

Setting them off are distinctive side skirts and body cladding. It’s black on SE and Sport, Frozen Grey on M Sport X. This detailing carries through to the rear, where SE and Sport get more conventional bumpers, M Sport feature a Dark Shadow diffuser and M Sport X feature an even more pumped-up diffuser in Frozen Grey. All X2 get dual 90mm exhaust tailpipes, and L-shaped LED tail lamps familiar from BMW coupes.

There’s also a swoopy rear spoiler that helps this small SUV hit a drag coefficient Cd of 0.28; good news for fuel economy as well as sporty styling.

The X1-derived interior has contrast stitching as standard, to help it stand out; M Sport models get distinctive seat trims and blue or yellow contrast colours. Every model up from SE has high-gloss black trim and a soft-touch dash is standard on all. A touchscreen iDrive system is standard too.

The X2 Concept was style-led but BMW hasn’t overlooked practicality with the production version. It has a 470-litre boot and a functional rear; doors have large stowage bins, points out the firm, and it’s ideal for “shopping sprees to a skiing weekend or mountain bike tour”.

Up to now, small premium SUVs haven’t been particularly known for their dynamic attributes. That’s going to change with the X2, says BMW; it will have “class-beating handling qualities, exceptional agility and superb feedback”. All models get a Driving Experience Switch to switch from Comfort to Sport; its functionality is enhanced further for those choosing Dynamic Damper Control.

M Sport and M Sport X models get tuned up suspension with stiffer springs and dampers, and a 10mm lower ride height than SE and Sport.

At launch, there will be just one engine, the X2 xDrive20d 2.0-litre turbodiesel, producing 190hp. It’s good for 0-62mph in 7.7 seconds and will average 61.4mpg. In time, the X2 will also comprise sDrive20i, sDrive18d and xDrive18d. All, for now at least, are four-cylinder TwinPower Turbo motors.

BMW is taking early sign-ups for the X2 in the UK now, ahead of deliveries starting in the first quarter of 2018. The entry-level £33,980 model is the X2 xDrive20d SE. 

Motoring Research hopes to drive it before 2017 is out; we have little doubt the sixth BMW X SUV will be a strong contender, but will it be a Range Rover Evoque beater in UK showrooms? Next year, we’ll find out…

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