BMW's new compact crossover isn't expected to break cover until late 2022.
BMW has been extremely busy lately. In the last couple of weeks, both the new BMW 5 Series facelift and the polarizing all-new BMW 4 Series have been unveiled. BMW's product onslaught will continue this year with the world debuts of the new BMW M3 and BMW M4 this September. But this doesn't mean BMW is neglecting its SUV range. For the first time, our spies spotted a prototype of the next-generation BMW X1, several years ahead of its expected reveal.
The prototype is heavily disguised in camouflage, but the kidney grille appears to be larger than the current models, although it's nowhere near as large as the new 4 Series Coupes, indicating that future BMW models will have more distinctive designs. Just imagine how jarring a massive grille would look on the compact X1. The headlights and taillights have also been redesigned, giving the crossover a sleeker look.
The new BMW X1 is expected to be offered in three flavors, including a combustion engine, plug-in hybrid, and a fully electric version that will most likely be called the iX1 positioned below the BMW X3-based iX3 electric crossover. Reports suggest the iX1 will be offered with either a 38- or 76-kWh battery offering up to 190 miles.
The smaller battery is expected to deliver a range of 115 miles. Inside, the electric iX1 will reportedly have a minimalist interior with a curved instrument panel and copious amounts of eco-friendly materials.
Technically, however, this isn't the first time BMW has built a compact crossover EV as an electric version of the current BMW X1 was sold in China, where it was rebadged as the Zinoro 1E.
This prototype, however, is based on the combustion-powered model. Since a new facelift model was introduced for the 2020 model year, the next-generation BMW X1 isn't expected to debut until late 2022. By then, the current BMW X1 will have been on sale for seven years. Technical details are still unknown, but the current BMW X1 is powered by a is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox that produces 228 horsepower and 258 lb-ft.