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With bolder styling, new equipment and elevated quality, the updated X1 definitely builds on its already popular appeal.

16 Jan 2020

We all know that SUVs and crossovers are all the rage these days. And whatever you may think about them (we personally don't enjoy them particularly much), there's no denying that they are helping carmakers make money. Lots and lots of money.  

Case in point - the BMW X1. Since it was launched in 2009, it has become BMW's best selling X model, selling more than 1.6 million models worldwide.

Now, the second generation model has been given a mid-cycle facelift, and is offered in three variants here in Singapore - the base sDrive18i, sDrive18i xLine, as well as this variant that you see here, the sDrive20i M Sport.  

What's changed? 

The refreshed X1 features slimmer head lights, a larger kidney grille and larger air intakes
The styling changes are obvious - with an enlarged kidney grille, larger air intakes, slimmer LED head lights and 20mm wider diameter tailpipes, the car is a lot more aggressive and butch-looking. This M Sport variant also gets the M Aerodynamics Package and 19-inch allow wheels, which further contribute to the car's more masculine demeanour.

Its quite a bold and stark look that certainly helps the refreshed X1 look more like its bigger brothers, such as the X3 and the X5.

The X1 now runs the sixth generation iDrive infotainment system
The interior also receives several upgrades. The most obvious one is the new infotainment system - the 8.8-inch Touch Display runs the sixth generation iDrive system, and you BMW ConnectedDrive Services as well, giving you access to useful functions such as Real Time Traffic Information and Remote Services.

There's also Aluminium interior trim finishers, Sensatec upholstery, an interior lights package and velour floor mats, so there's no denying the overall quality of the cabin. Usefully, the X1 also now features the Comfort Access System, which allows contactless opening and closing of the tailgate. 

Does it drive well? 

The 2.0-litre pumps out a healthy dose of 189bhp and 280Nm of torque
Mechanically, the X1 is essentially unchanged. The same engine options are available - a 1.5-litre powerplant in the sDrive18i models, and a 2.0-litre engine in this sDrive20i. With 189bhp and 280Nm of torque available, acceleration is brisk and effortless.

Despite being fitted with the M Sport suspension, the ride quality in the X1 is commendable. It soaks up bumps well, demonstrates good body control around twisty roads, and all in all does everything you want a crossover to do. 

So, what's the big deal? 

BWM ConnectedDrive Services gives you access to handy features such as vehicle tracking
The X1 is BMW's cash cow, and there's no reason to mess with a proven formula. The mid-cycle facelift brings aesthetic and equipment changes to shift the X1 up-to-date, while the capable mechanical qualities of the car remains unchanged.

Funnily enough, due to the quirks of the VES banding system, this sDrive20i variant is just $1,000 more than the sDrive18i xLine. If you're choosing between the two, getting this variant seems like a no brainer. It's more powerful, sportier-looking, and a tad more engaging to drive. One thing to note, though - the sDrive xLine gets the Driving Assistant safety system as standard, but it's a cost option on the other variants.

Ultimately, the cheapest sDrive18i base model will likely be the big seller (for obvious reasons). And, there's nothing wrong with that. This car is made to make money, and it's going to make BMW a ton of money. That's a guarantee.

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Car Information

There's a promotion for BMW X1


: $196,888

Engine Type


4-cylinder in-line 16-valve TwinPower Turbocharged

Engine Cap





141kW (189 bhp) / 6000 rpm



280 Nm / 4600 rpm



7-speed (A) Steptronic

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)



Top Speed



Fuel consumption



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bmw  bmw x1  x1  x1 lci  x1 facelift  x1 sdrive20i  bmw suv  crossover  suv