BMW is putting a lot of its chips on the success of its forthcoming front-wheel drive models, and it's making a big bet on the company's future in hoping that customers will accept them. Its front-driving UKL platform is underpinning not just the current crop of Minis but a host of BMW vehicles too. The rollout starts with the 2 Series Active Tourer in Europe later this year. But the Bavarian brand confirms to Automotive News Europe that the next one is the X1 crossover, slated to come to Europe next June. It will also be joined by the X2 next summer, confirming earlier rumors about the fashionable CUV's existence.

As the previous spy photos suggest, the X1 is even smaller than the current model, and it supposedly uses the same crop of turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder and 2.0-liter four-cylinder engines as Mini. But according to Automotive News Europe, the little guy is getting an extended, three-row version for the US, Russia and China. Like with the X4 or X6, the X2 shares most of the mechanical parts with its more conventional-looking sibling but features sleeker styling.

To make all of these UKL-based models possible, BMW is sharing development among them as much as is practical. According to Automotive News Europe, the next generations of the Mini Countryman, Clubman, X1 and X2 share the same electrical systems, drivetrains and more. Adding in the Active Tourer and still mysterious Family Active Sports Tourer to the mix, and the result is a big gamble that needs to go Bimmer's way.


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  • 19 Comments
      chrismcfreely
      • 4 Months Ago

      The x1 is pretty new, they waste a lot of r&d $$ on unnecessary new stuff, instead of improving reliability and other problem areas on current models.  I would go with a different automaker.

      jonnybimmer
      • 4 Months Ago

      "I like BMW's, but I wish they had a small fwd crossover" - said no one EVER.

        Dean Hammond
        • 4 Months Ago
        @jonnybimmer

        wont matter to buyers, and there WILL be plenty...its all about that badge up front....image is everything to a majority of BMW owners that have NO concept of what their vehicle is capable of...

          skoobey
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Dean Hammond

          Only capable vehicles in my opinion are SUVs, and BMW doesn't make those, so looking cool is what it's all about.

      Lol
      • 4 Months Ago

      BMW has lost it's way the moment it started proliferating the lineup with a lot of ridiculously useless models.. The front wheel drive platform is just further confirms this...

        skoobey
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Lol

        And 3 series sedan is more useful than this car how? Same space, same safety, same MPG, same interior so???

      Adrian Elliot
      • 4 Months Ago

      Jesus Christ.

      Susan
      • 4 Months Ago

      Come on guys, so many comments about BMW losing its way, etc. But realistically, Joe and Buffy Suburban don't have the slightest idea if their car is FWD or RWD nor have any idea of how the handling differs. And for most of them, if the dealer says "AWD", they think it is some sort of magic formula to enable them to drive 70mph on icy roads. The pathetic isn't on the part of BMW, it is on the abysmal state of driver education in the USA and on pathetic badge-leasing.

      Winnie Jenkems
      • 4 Months Ago

      Abomination.
      A shadow of its former self.

        Stridenttube
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Winnie Jenkems

        Go drive a 335i M sport and get tell me again how BMW is a shadow of it's former self. 

          The Wasp
          • 4 Months Ago
          @Stridenttube

          What is a "335i M Sport"?

          Oh, yeah, that's right.  It's a cheaper wannabe-M.

          I wouldn't say BMW is a shadow of it's former self.  I would say BMW has thrown it's former self in the toilet and is making a mess of things before flushing it away.

      skoobey
      • 4 Months Ago

      FIrst of all, most people by BMWs because they look cool and have great interiors. 90% of the drivers don't care about "performance" whatever that means, they care about the status and the feeling they get from the car. So, this is still a BMW.

      _I_I_II_I_I_
      • 4 Months Ago

      BMW has so lost the thread of what made them great, it's pathetic.

      gb
      • 4 Months Ago

      In 2010 80 percent of BMW 1-Series drivers believed they were driving a front-wheel drive.  Just because you drive a BMW doesn't mean your a car guy

        herrstreet
        • 4 Months Ago
        @gb

        I totally see your point, but a large part of the image building they have done over the years is that their cars have always been the darlings of critics.  Although I have no doubt that this will be well engineered and make them 12% or greater profit margins - one has to wonder if this image can be sustained over the long run with comments like, "man this thing drives like no CR-V you have ever taken to Ikea!" So in the short run, you're absolutely right.  I'm just not convinced about the long game here.  The i models however...

        Susan
        • 4 Months Ago
        @gb

        Unfortunately, at least in USA, now it might mean that you are NOT a car guy.

      herrstreet
      • 4 Months Ago

      With all this platform sharing, one would think the new Mini could go down a few thousand dollars in base price... doh!

      I know it will have a ton more power and nicer materials but the car really looks an awful lot like my wife's CX-5.

      tbird57w
      • 4 Months Ago

      bmw just seems to have lost its way over the last few years and what made it special  maybe they just have to change with so much competition.


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