The cupboard of virtual options has opened itself yet again with the appearance of the 2013 BMW X1 configurator. There are three choices of X1 to choose from, the sDrive28i, xDrive28i and xDrive35i, and then three trim levels beyond that: X Line, Sport Line and M Sport Line.

It takes $30,650 in Internet money, plus $895 for destination, to open a configurator account with the sDrive28i. It might appear that the starting price is $31,545 then, but strangely, you must order one of the trim lines and that adds another $1,900 for the X and Sport Lines, or $2,500 for the M Sport Line on the sDrive28i and xDrive28i, and $3,000 on the xDrive35i. We don't know why BMW didn't factor the two lower trim prices into the base price and only charge for the M Sport Line. Regardless, the result is a listed base price of $32,350 for the xDrive28i that's an effective price of $35,145, and a listed base price of $38,450 for the xDrive35i that effectively comes to $41,845 before any options are selected.
Speaking of which, because of the way BMW ties options and trims to specific packages, using the configurator can be frustrating. One example: the Cold Weather Package (CWP) is $700 on four-cylinder models, and it includes a heated steering wheel. That wheel isn't compatible with the tiller on the M Sports Line, though, so if you're building a four-cylinder X1 with the M Sports Line, choosing the CWP drops you down to the Sports Line. The CWP is $550 on the xDrive351 M Sports Line, but if you choose it, it eliminates every trim line from invoice sheet, saving you $2,500. Which means you can forget about the $41,845 price – now you're at $39,895. Uncheck the CWP and save another $550, and your invoice summary is now $39,345 out-the-door for an xDrive35i that has no options and, ostensibly, no trim package. Got it?

Don't even get us started on what happens when you play around with the paint choices. Speaking of which, throw on the Valencia Orange paint and add another $550. There are 11 metallic exterior hues, all of them $550, but only black and white if you don't want to pay more.

The real point of all of this: we were able to ring up a foolishly optioned xDrive35i for $49,965, and there might have been some boxes we missed. Have a good time playing, just make sure you pay attention to your combinations and permutations.

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