First drive: BMW iX2 becomes the coupe-SUV it was always meant to be

Staff
By Staff
5 Min Read

The first BMW X2 didn’t really fit the mould. For starters, it was smaller than the X1, despite occupying a larger number in BMW’s model hierarchy.

In BMW’s world, where the X4 is a coupe version of the X3 and the X6 is a coupe version of the X5, the X2 was more like a chubby version of the 1 Series hatchback and not a sleeker alternative to the mightily popular X1 SUV.

For the second generation, the new X2 is visually a much stronger relation to the X1. It shares a familiar imposing front end, functional interior and powertrains, with the rear-end providing the major difference.

That’s right. BMW has now aligned the X2 properly against the X1, so it has a sloping roofline and more athletic proportions.

While these pricier coupes only sell a fraction of the volumes their SUV counterparts achieve, there’s undeniably a growing trend towards this bodystyle. Peugeot has just redesigned its popular 3008 with a sleeker silhouette.

This review is centred on the electric iX2, which is offered with two powertrain options. There’s the single-motor eDrive 20 and the twin-motor xDrive30, just like the iX1.

The eDrive20 has both a lower list price and longer range. You can expect around 230 miles from the cars 65kWh battery – the WLTP figure is 283 miles. Performance is adequate too, with 0-62mph taking 8.6 seconds.

Stepping up to the xDrive30 delivers a more thrilling experience. It’s a very rapid car, with effortless acceleration. The all-wheel-drive configuration delivers enhanced grip and more confidence in less grippy conditions, but it does come at the expense of range. In colder weather, our testing revealed a realistic range of about 200 miles. The official range is 267 miles.

The iX2 is meant to be a sportier and more driver focused vehicle, when compared to the iX1. It’s an enjoyable car to drive, especially in twin-motor guise. The steering is lighter than we’d expected, giving a more agile but less relaxed feel.

At higher speeds the iX2 is very refined with its body providing enhanced aerodynamics and less wind noise. Ride quality impressed too, even on out test car’s 20-inch wheels, the iX2 isolates occupants from the worst road surfaces.

Pricing starts at £51,615, for the eDrive20, rising to £57,445 for the xDrive30, making the iX2 a competitor for the Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback, Genesis GV60, Polestar 2 and Volvo EC40. Only the M Sport trim level is available, currently.

It means the iX2 is priced keenly against its main pool of rivals with only the Polestar 2 offering a better value proposition.

With BMW’s exceptionally high level of build quality, the interior is befitting of the iX2’s premium price tag. It’s a comfortable and well design cabin with a good driving position, supportive seats and an impressive level of equipment.

A giant panoramic screen dominates the iX2’s interior, providing all the instrumentation and infotainment functions on board. There are very few physical switches, with the touchscreen portion of the display used to command key functions and settings. Drivers can also use voice commands to instruct the system.

All iX2s come with parking sensors, a reversing camera and parking assistant, the latter of which can assist the driver with parking manoeuvres. A 360-degree surround view camera is optionally available and includes a built-in dashcam feature.

You might think that taking an iX1 and cutting a bit off the back is generally going to affect practicality, but it’s not quite that straightforward. The iX2 has a completely different body and is a little longer, meaning it is a spacious car – certainly more so than its predecessor.

Boot volume, measured to the top of the rear seats is actually larger than an iX1 at 525 litres vs 490 litres.

Interior space is also more generous than before, although there’s a little less headroom than in an iX1. For family car duties, the iX2 will fit the bill well.

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