- New Car Test Drive
The 2.0-liter turbo engine, with 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, accelerates from zero to sixty in 6.4 seconds, quick for its class.
The speed-sensitive electric power steering is quick and well weighted, while lacking in BMW feel, but you can still run the X1 on twisty roads harder than your everyday crossover. The good brakes complement such conditions. We haven’t tested the stiffer M Sport yet.
The ride is comfortable, even on standard 18-inch wheels with run-flat all-season tires; conventional all-season tires with a space-saver spare are available at no extra cost.
The Driving Dynamic Control modes are Sport, Comfort, and Eco Pro, which change the sensitivity of the steering, throttle, and transmission. Not surprisingly, given the intent of the X1, we found a significant difference between the settings, as it’s supposed to be. Power is quite slow to arrive in Eco Pro, medium slow in Comfort, and quicker in Sport, or if you’re using manual control in the shift gate or the paddleshifters. In any mode other than Sport, the transmission stubbornly resists shifting down during uphill acceleration.
BMW’s all-wheel drive xDrive uses a clutch and hydraulic pump system that can shift 100 percent of the power to the rear wheels in a small fraction of a second. Our seat time included some miles in the mountains on roads with rocks and mud from recent landslides. The X1’s good ground clearance was useful, however, on some gravelly spots, we lost some confidence along with lost traction.