BMW X1 M35i Looks Like An Audi Q3 Killer

Spy Shots / 1 Comment

BMW's Q3-killer is coming along nicely.

We've got some hot, fresh spy shots of BMW's Audi Q3-fighter, the X1. Only this time, it's the fast one, the BMW X1 M35i, seen testing at the Nurburgring. It was out for some hot laps today. We do mean that literally. Today on the 'Ring, it was north of 98 degrees outside (37 C for you Europeans). Our spies speculate that this could be the reason we're seeing a much more camo-free car this time around.

When we last saw the car, it was fully buttoned up for winter. BMW hasn't really had a small, fast crossover yet, a move both Mercedes and Audi already offer. That's doubly true with the RSQ3 over in Europe. Regardless, that's about where we expect this hot crossover to sit.

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As we saw last time around, the new M35i will get M's trademark quad exhaust tips. Reportedly, this won't be the only 'decaf M' car getting these pipes. Our spies report that quad-pipe updates are being considered to give other M Performance cars a sportier look and feel. We've seen Europe's 1 Series with this updated layout, for example.

Regardless, we expect the same output as the M35i versions of the 1 Series and 2 Series Gran Coupe cars. That means around 306 hp and 331 lb-ft of torque. However, we could also see those numbers come up a notch. The larger crossover is heavier than the aforementioned cars, and BMW will need to compensate for that to stay competitive.

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Aesthetically, we now have a solid look at the bumper and grille, which appears to keep BMW's vertical layout. The rest of the bumper looks very "M," with a newer, more aggressive lower fascia. The front is all very typical of M-branded BMWs, and the side inlets echo the 2 Series nicely.

Around back, we can see new marker lights, as well as a peek at the new roof spoiler. The lights aren't much to look at, but that rear wing is very aggressive, as are the bigger brakes. We expect that to be accompanied by firmer suspension. Inside, the cockpit appears typically BMW, with iDrive8 in the center and some sportier seats. Our spies also reported a nicer steering wheel onboard. For more info, we'll have to wait for BMW to give us official details, or the arrival of more photos.

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