BMW X1 sDrive20d 2013 Review

January 23rd, 2013 by Darren Cottingham

Back in 2009 BMW launched the first ever luxury compact SUV at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Today, that segment is a bit more competitive with the likes of the Range Rover Evoque and Audi Q3. Even second-tier compact SUVs such as Mazda’s top-of-the-line CX-5 AWD Diesel Ltd nip at the heels with comparable specification, if not brand cachet.

And that gives BMW good reason to perform a refresh on the BMW for 2013. They call it a Continue reading “BMW X1 sDrive20d 2013 Review” »

BMW X1 becomes Europe’s top-selling premium SUV

August 17th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

In a reversal of form and by a margin of just 407 vehicles, the BMW X1 has fended off the Audi Q5 to be Europe’s highest-selling premium SUV for the first six months of 2010. BMW gladly sold 44,067 units of the X1 from January to June, compared to 43,660 units of the Q5.

The Volvo XC60 (29,616 units), Land Rover Freelander (20,138 units) and the BMW X5 (16,565) were the others in the five top selling SUVs in Europe for that time period.

Sales of the X1 have certainly not slowed down and the X1 is the cheapest vehicle in the top five premium SUVs which has clearly helped.

However, the list could get quickly rewritten once 2011 model year vehicles go on sale.  This new breed could include X1 competitors from Mercedes-Benz, along with the Audi Q3 and Saab 9-4X.  The MINI Countryman may also steal some customers away from the X1, even though it may not be labelled a premium SUV.

To read a Car and SUV review of the new BMW X1, click here. Continue reading “BMW X1 becomes Europe’s top-selling premium SUV” »

BMW NZ offering kiwi driving enthusiasts alpine thrill

July 13th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Kiwi motoring enthusiasts are being given the opportunity to participate in an exclusive event which will see them experience BMW’s latest Sport Activity Vehicles at the Southern Hemisphere Proving Ground above the hills near Queenstown.

Called the Alpine xDrive experience, the two-day long course lets drivers handle the latest BMW xDrive product in an almost traction-less environment which will put vehicle technologies to the ultimate test.

“BMW’s latest range of x-models will be available for people to drive and experience in a unique situation complemented by breath-taking landscape,” said BMW New Zealand Sales and Marketing Manager, Greg Hedgepeth. “This is a truly world-class way to experience the ultimate driving machine, including the new X1, X3, X5 and X6.  We’ll be utilizing the purpose-built alpine facility for the sole function of testing the limits of winter driving.”

BMW introduced its first Sport Activity Vehicle in 1999, the X5, and since that time it has been the best selling model in the BMW NZ line-up every year but one.

“BMW x-Drive models, especially the X5, offer the functionality, versatility, performance and driving dynamics that other brands can only but dream about,” said Mr Hedgepeth.”Participants will be shown how to get the best from these vehicles by our world renowned BMW driver training instructors.  We’d encourage people to come to Queenstown and put our product to the ultimate test.”

The BMW xDrive Experience is taking place during August 11 — 14 and more details and pricing can be found at: www.bmw.co.nz/alpinexdrive2010

Click here to read a Car and SUV road test of the new 2010 BMW X1.

BMW X1 23D 2010 Review

July 2nd, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Born into a rapidly expanding range, BMW’s new X1 is the final card to complete a full house in the X line-up consisting of the X3, X5 and X6 models. The X1 enters the market with crossovers well established in car buyers’ consciousness and no longer niche vehicles. BMW has hedged its bets nicely by representing itself in the small crossover segment to appeal to new customers and catch badge fans who may follow the current downsizing trend and leave behind larger X-series siblings. So with BMW’s now 10-year-long four-wheel-drive experience, modern powertrains and bullet-proof luxury quality it should be money in the bank, right? Perhaps, but with the tricky broad focus of crossover vehicles it’s not always that easy. Car and SUV spent some time with the new BMW X1 to see if it comes up trumps.

In styling terms the X1 is more closely related to a tall wagon than a boxy off-roader and is designed to appear bulky but is quite compact in the flesh. By comparison, it’s slightly shorter in length than both the Mazda3 hatch and the 3-Series wagon with which it shares many mechanical underpinnings. It’s exterior aesthetic is familiar yet shows a brazen streak with a raked back windscreen and deeply scalloped flanks. Out front, a XL-size BMW kidney grill sits between squinting headlights and fog lamps that are set deeply into a chunky bumper. A strip of tough silver and black plastic trim runs around the X1’s bottom edge to protect the panels and visually boast of rough roading cred. The rear is sharply cut off and houses a taillight cluster similar in design to the new 5-Series. Completing the hardy, low-slung look on our test vehicle were silver roof rails and optional 18-inch wheels (17-inch as standard).

Inside, you’re greeted with an elegantly finished dashboard that subtly cossets the driver. All instrumentation is clear, functional and well placed for easy operation on the fly. Numerous interior trim options are available but our test vehicle looked very sharp with a simple mix of black plastics and brushed metal/silver inserts. As you’d expect the fit and quality of materials is excellent and all touch surfaces feel top-notch. The optional ($3,300) leather seats were soft, supportive and offered a commanding driving position that made the most of the X1’s raised height. Standard kit on the 23d includes cruise control with braking function, CD stereo with auxiliary input and USB interface, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, leather-wrapped multi-function steering wheel, dual-zone climate air conditioning and daytime running lights. There is also a wide range of optional equipment available like front parking sensors ($750) and an impressively huge panoramic glass roof ($3,350) that really lights up the cabin.

Continue reading “BMW X1 23D 2010 Review” »

Ford Mustang X1

December 20th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Created by US Air Force – Ford Mustang X1


BMW X1 high performance snow driving

December 16th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham
Highly camouflaged BMW X1 high-performance snow driving

Highly camouflaged BMW X1 high-performance snow driving

BMW officially announces new X1

July 3rd, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

BMW X1 rq

After the first official images leaked out, BMW was quick to follow up with a release of technical information about its all-new new X1.

The new car should launch here in NZ in the first half of 2010. Till then, BMW has revealed details for the European X1 lineup.

From launch, the X1 will be equipped with one of three 2.0 litre, four cylinder diesel engines and one 3.0 litre six-cylinder petrol power plant. BMW’s range of EfficientDynamics fuel saving features will be utilised, including Auto Start-Stop, Brake Energy Regeneration and a gearshift point indicator.

On the underside of the X1 is a five-arm rear suspension system constructed from lightweight steel. Up front, there’s either a double joint trust bar or aluminium double joint tie bar system. Safety features offered as standard include Dynamic Stability Control, front, side and head airbags, daytime driving lights and three-point seat belts for all occupants.

Rear seat occupants receive three full-size individual seats, each backrest is adjustable separately and folds in a 40/20/40 split. With the rear seats folded down luggage capacity grows from 420 litres to 1350 litres.

Check back as we bring you more updates on the X1 as it nears launch.

Future BMW small car range leaked

June 9th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

BMW X Coupe

A complete list of future BMW compact models leaked on to the internet last weekend. The names getting thrown around include the BMW X1, X2, Y1 and Z2 among others. All these new BMW models will be built on the next generation BMW 1 Series platform as the company is preparing to launch an assault on the premium small car market. The upcoming 1 Series will be a modular platform on which three portfolios of models will be based named Traditional, Lifestyle and Sporting.

The Traditional portfolio will include the BMW 1 Series, BMW 1 Series Active Hybrid and the BMW 1 Series Sporthatch.

The Sporting portfolio will include the BMW 1 Series Coupe, Cabrio, SuperSports and the BMW Z2 and Z2 Coupe.

The third portfolio, Lifestyle, will include the BMW X1, the BMW X2, the BMW Y1 and the 1 Series Gran Turismo.

The German carmaker is apparently also preparing a new performance version in the style of the M3 CSL which will be based on the 135i. The BMW 135i Lightweight BMW Performance Concept will be a stripped down version of the current car for which the company will use various lightweight materials.