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Edmunds' Expert Review

  • Class-leading cargo capacity
  • quickest and most agile among its competitor
  • interior materials are of the highest quality and constructed with detail and care.
  • Sporty personality is a disadvantage when trying to reach fuel economy estimates
  • lack of a six-cylinder engine option and lower dynamic capability is a step back from the previous-generation X1.

If you are in the market for a luxury SUV in a small package, the 2016 BMW X1 is a good place to start. The BMW isn't the most fuel-efficient in its class, but if athleticism and cargo capacity are important to you, the BMW sets the bar. Which characteristics are most important to you in a compact SUV? Read on to decide.

Notably, we picked the BMW X1 as one of Edmunds' Best Used Luxury SUVs for 2016.

Vehicle overview

If you're shopping for an entry-level BMW crossover SUV, you're going to end up looking at the X1, the automaker's smallest and most affordable utility vehicle. The previous-generation BMW X1 was great fun to drive but exceptionally tight on passenger space, and therefore pretty impractical for family use. It's a different story with the redesigned 2016 BMW X1, though, which is taller and wider and much roomier on the inside. That's not the only upgrade on the new X1, but it's the main reason to put this small luxury crossover back on your shopping list.

The all-new 2016 BMW X1 adopts front-wheel-drive architecture but retains its athletic SUV looks.

BMW purists might alert you to the fact that the X1 is no longer based on the rear-wheel-drive 3 Series and now shares its front-wheel-drive platform architecture with the Mini Cooper family (BMW owns Mini). We'll agree that it's a little weird to have "front-wheel drive" and "BMW" in the same sentence, but for the majority of shoppers interested in an entry-level luxury crossover, there's no significant downside to this change. Minis are already known for their nimble handling, so there's hardly any great loss in raiding the corporate parts bin, while the standard turbocharged four-cylinder engine, while down on power compared to last year's four-cylinder X1, should deliver acceleration and fuel mileage that's as good as or better than any of this crossover's four-cylinder rivals. Plus, all-wheel drive is also standard, so every 2016 X1 is suitable for winter-weather driving.

Inside the 2016 BMW X1, head-, shoulder and legroom have all increased, especially in the backseat. Cargo capacity is now near the top of the class, though anyone needing serious cubic footage would do better with a larger crossover like the X3. Cabin materials are noticeably nicer than before, and the X1's front occupants finally get standard power-adjustable seats. There are a few new technology features, too, including an available head-up display, a hands-free power liftgate and a frontal collision mitigation system with pedestrian detection.

Within the growing class of small luxury crossover SUVs, the BMW X1 is easily one of the most appealing options for 2016. You'll find interior accommodations of similar quality in competitors like the Audi Q3 and Mercedes-Benz GLA250, but adults will have trouble getting comfortable in their snug backseats, and both crossovers are quite a bit slower than the X1. The distinctively styled Lexus NX 200t has a nicely appointed cabin of its own and a good-sized rear seat, but offers very little cargo space when that seat's in use. Meanwhile, the larger and somewhat more expensive Acura RDX is better suited for families than the others and remains an excellent value for shoppers who prefer a six-cylinder engine.

That's not to say the 2016 BMW X1 wouldn't also work for a small family. Whereas its predecessor was narrowly focused on delivering a sporty driving experience, this new X1 is far more practical and worth considering if you want a useful luxury crossover with a small footprint.

2016 BMW X1 models

The 2016 BMW X1 is a small luxury crossover SUV with seating for five. It's offered in a single xDrive28i trim level.

Standard equipment includes 18-inch wheels, automatic windshield wipers, a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, eight-way power front seats, driver memory settings, "SensaTec" premium vinyl upholstery and a 40/20/40-split-folding rear seat. Standard electronic features include BMW's iDrive interface with a touchpad controller and 6.5-inch screen, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, and a seven-speaker sound system with HD radio, a CD player and a USB input.

There are several major option packages for the 2016 BMW X1. The Premium package adds keyless ignition and entry, hands-free control for the power liftgate, adaptive LED headlights, a panoramic sunroof, power-folding mirrors, four-way power lumbar for the front seats and interior ambient lighting. Meanwhile, the Luxury package is your ticket to real leather upholstery and wood interior trim. The Technology package will be a must for smartphone addicts, as it bundles BMW's integrated smartphone apps, navigation and an upgraded 8.8-inch display screen. The M Sport package (late availability) adds sportier programming for the automatic transmission, a sport-tuned suspension, exterior aerodynamic trim pieces, sport seats and an M Sport steering wheel with paddle shifters, and requires that you order summer performance run-flat tires as a no-cost add-on (in lieu of the standard all-season run-flat tires).

On the safety front, there are two Driver Assistance packages. The base package bundles a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors and an automated parallel-parking system that steers the X1 into spots for you. The Plus version of this package must be purchased in combination with the adaptive cruise control option. It adds a frontal collision warning and mitigation system with pedestrian detection, lane departure warnings, automatic high-beam headlight control and speed limit information. Note that if you order the Cold Weather package (heated steering wheel and front seats), you lose the heated steering wheel when the Driver Assistance Plus package is equipped.

One individual option that most BMW X1 buyers will want to get is recline and fore-and-aft sliding adjustment for the rear seats. This option also includes power fold-down capability for the seats. Other notable add-ons are 19-inch wheels and a 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio system. You can also get conventional all-season tires instead of run-flat tires.

2016 Highlights

For 2016, the BMW X1 is completely redesigned. Change highlights include a roomier interior.

Performance & mpg

For 2016, every BMW X1 comes with a turbocharged, 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine rated at 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission drives all four wheels through the standard all-wheel-drive system, which also includes hill descent control.

The 2016 BMW X1 comes with a fair number of standard features, but if you want this widescreen infotainment display, you'll need the Technology package.

At the Edmunds test track, an X1 with 19-inch all-season tires sprinted from zero to 60 mpg in 6.5 seconds, making it one of the quicker vehicles in its class. The EPA's estimated fuel economy for the 2016 X1 is 26 mpg combined (22 city/32 highway).


Every 2016 BMW X1 comes standard with stability and traction control, antilock disc brakes (with automatic brake drying), front side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, front knee airbags, active front-seat head restraints and hill descent control. Also standard is the BMW Assist emergency communications system, which provides automatic crash notification, stolen vehicle recovery and on-demand roadside assistance.

Optional safety equipment includes the rearview camera and parking sensors that are part of the basic Driver Assistance package. The Plus version of that package provides more advanced driver aids like a frontal collision warning and mitigation system with pedestrian detection and lane departure warnings.

In Edmunds brake testing, an X1 with 19-inch wheels and all-season tires came to a stop from 60 mph in 109 feet, an exceptionally short stopping distance for a car in this class.


Most buyers will be happy with the turbocharged four-cylinder engine that comes in every 2016 BMW X1. This engine is smooth and powerful in normal driving situations, and should be quite fuel-efficient. The eight-speed automatic transmission shifts unobtrusively, though the quicker gearchanges that come when you select Sport mode in iDrive feel more appropriate for matching BMW's "Ultimate Driving Machine" tagline.

Earlier BMW X1s were known for their extraordinarily athletic handling. You'll still have fun driving the 2016 X1 around tight turns, but in general, it feels more like a utility vehicle and less like a car. The light-effort steering is precise, but if you've previously owned a BMW, you might find it lacking in feedback. Ride comfort also takes greater priority on the 2016 BMW X1, though you'll likely want to avoid the 19-inch wheels if you regularly drive on rough roads.


Whereas earlier BMW X1s had a fairly plain interior design, the 2016 X1 is more inviting and has one of the most elegant cabins in this price range. The expensive-looking dash combines BMW's classic analog gauges with modern technology and high-quality materials, although, you'll need to ante up for the optional 8.8-inch iDrive display screen to enjoy the full effect. The biggest upgrade compared to last year's X1, though, is the increase in passenger space.

From the driver seat, the 2016 X1 feels less like a sport sedan than its predecessor, but it's still a swift and dynamic drive, with better ride quality to boot.

You'll especially notice the difference in the backseat, where there's more room in every direction. Transporting adults and teenagers in the backseat should be a far more pleasant task, and installing a rear-facing car seat is finally a viable proposition (depending on which child safety seat you have, of course). Still, you'll definitely want to spend a few extra bucks on the optional slide and recline adjustment for the rear seats. With the rear seats in use, you'll have 17.8 cubic feet at your disposal for hauling groceries. With that upgraded rear seat equipped, you can fold down the seats at the touch of a button and open up 58.7 cubic feet, which is a good number for a small luxury crossover. Owners will also find plenty of small storage slots in the front seat.

Although we would have liked to see BMW equip the redesigned X1 with a newer-generation touchscreen with pinch-and-swipe capability (as in the 2016 7 Series), its iDrive technology interface is still functional and fairly easy to use. An integrated touchpad on the main control dial lets you scrawl text and number inputs with your fingertip, a feature that's more useful than you might think. The menu structure is straightforward and processing times are quick, which helps minimize the amount of time you spend looking away from the road.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2016 BMW X1.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

5 out of 5 stars
It's a little/BIG SUV/SAV
xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I was cross shopping the Audi Q5, Mercedes GLC, BMW X3, and Volkswagen GTI. And then I saw this new X1. I was thinking to wait for the next gen Q5, but I decided to buy this car. It’s a handsome car inside out. The interior is very spacious. The headroom and legroom are comparable or even bigger than the current Q5, GLC, X3, and GTI. It’s even comparable to the larger X5. (X5 vs X1: F head 40, 41.9; R head 39.3, 39.4; F leg 40, 40.4; R leg 36.6, 37) I am 5’10, 165 lbs, I fit in the back seat comfortably even when the front seat is all the way back. And my car is not even with the sliding rear seat option. The trunk is also big, fits $200+ groceries from Costco easily. The engine is potent. The transmission is smooth. The handle is nimble. The acceleration is quick. It’s fuel efficient. Overall it’s a very practical car. I understand it’s being categorized as a subcompact SUV/SAV, but you really have to test drive and get inside of the car to understand what I’m talking about. It’s BIG!!! OK, now the bad. The front seat is too narrow. The gas pedal is too close to the side wall of the center console. The center console storage is relatively small. There is still noticeable turbo lag when stop and go. The suspension is too hard, you can feel every tinny hole and bump on the road. The LED headlight and taillight only come with the premium package, and the price is pretty premium for that.
5 out of 5 stars
Significant improvement from the prev. generation!
Peter Ghosh,08/12/2016
xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I had a 2014 X1 (prev generation) that was my favorite car ever, but was coming off lease. I expected this new generation of X1 to be fair since it was being molded to look like the rest of the X-line family (truth be told, I wanted the Tesla Model 3 but couldn't wait that long). I was wrong. Dead wrong. This is actually more fun than the last one. Slightly less horsepower, yet the 0-60 is quicker. The move to a front-wheel-emphasized 4WD is not noticeable. I sometimes miss the hydraulic steering (however, the 2016's adaptive steering makes parking and city driving much easier). I got every tech package except the ACC (c'mon, an extra thousand, really?) and it seems worth it. By adding a few extra PSI to the tires (compared to the door sticker), I am getting 35+ MPG on the highway! Eco-mode is much more useful now without sacrifice (I especially didn't like the jolt on the 2014 when I needed to pass someone on the highway due to the shift timing change in this mode). The interior materials are a step up (interior lighting at night is especially top notch). The rear view is crowded compared to previous gen (due to smaller rear window and seat back obstructions), but not dangerous. The front seats are narrower than the last model and could use a little more cushioning as well - make sure you like them first vs. ordering the sports seats/package. I am 5'8 at 175 pounds so the base seats work for me. Overall, It's more luxurious, quieter and more fun than the previous generation (which was already great). I will have a hard time giving this up in 3 years.
5 out of 5 stars
WOW!! What a car!!,11/04/2016
xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I am a TDI victim and found this gem at the local dealer. Its the greatest car I've ever owned. Its the perfect size, not to big, but big enough. The creature comforts are unbelievable. The handling, acceleration and seats are all fantastic. The other car companies must pay people to write bad reviews. Please at least go and test drive one and you will be amazed. The lighting at night is really neat. Also, BMW rebuilds their cars on the inside, not some new plastic molding like other car companies. Get it! Enjoy it! I just wanted to let people know. I've never written a review before... yeah I like it that much.
5 out of 5 stars
M. McReynolds,03/24/2016
xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
3500 miles in and 5 stars in all aspects. Based on my experience, it lives up to BMW's in class performance, fuel economy and cargo. I evaluated other comparable models (Lexus NX, Acura RDX, Mercedes GLA, and Audi Q3) and chose the BMW X1. Car and Driver rating 4.5 out of 5. It's roomier on the inside than it appears from the outside. For both rows of seats, it actually has more head and leg room than the current BMW X3. I highly recommend the optional sliding 2nd row seat to gain flexibility for passengers versus cargo. Well-engineered and easy to use information technology (iDrive, bluetooth, Navigation, etc.). I didn't spec the safety technologies, so I can't comment on them. Give it a try - you won't be disappointed!

More about the 2016 BMW X1
More About This Model

Quick Summary
This second-generation 2016 BMW X1 is new from bumper to bumper. Although slightly shorter than before, it's significantly taller, a little wider and considerably more spacious. It looks more like an SUV rather than a high-riding station wagon like the previous X1. Available in only one form, as a 228-horsepower gasoline xDrive28i with standard all-wheel drive, the latest X1 solidifies its spot as the entry-level crossover in the BMW lineup.

What Is It?
The 2016 BMW X1 is a compact premium crossover that slots below the X3 in BMW's lineup. It offers only one engine: a 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated to produce 228 hp, coupled to an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive.

This is the second-generation X1, featuring a taller, more spacious cabin, higher seating, an improved interior finish and more equipment.

What Body Styles and Trim Levels Does It Come in?
The X1 is available with only one five-door body style. Full model line specifications have yet to be confirmed, but there will be an optional M Sport trim, as well as premium and driver assistance packages.

Standard equipment includes power front seats with driver-seat memory, a 6.5-inch iDrive infotainment screen, dynamic cruise control, automatic wipers and headlights, keyless entry, heated mirrors, a four-way adjustable multifunction leather wheel, power tailgate, seven-speaker stereo, Driving Dynamic Control and 18-inch alloy wheels.

The Premium package includes a moonroof, hands-free tailgate operation, LED headlights and LED running lights, among other features.

How Does It Drive?
A more commanding driving position that offers excellent visibility makes the X1 feel reassuring from behind the wheel. It's also exceptionally quiet, and delivers super-smooth gearshifts from its standard eight-speed automatic transmission.

We wish the ride was a bit more forgiving, as this X1 can be jittery over sharper bumps. The trade-off is an X1 that also feels very confident through curves. More enthusiastic drivers will find it responsive enough to provide an entertaining drive on twisting roads. Precise, low-effort steering helps, too (it's weightier in Sport mode, which some will prefer), although the sensation of its electrical power assistance occasionally feels slightly odd.

The xDrive28i's new four-cylinder engine is actually slightly less powerful than the motor in the previous X1, producing 228 hp rather than the previous 240 hp. Its 258 pound-feet of torque output is 2 lb-ft down as well, although it's produced 200 rpm earlier at 1,250 rpm rather than 1,450 rpm.

Despite this, the all-wheel-drive xDrive28i performs well. BMW says it will go from zero to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds. The engine delivers its power smoothly and enthusiastically, a characteristic you'll appreciate with a fully loaded X1.

In typical driving, this BMW delivers above-average refinement that makes it an excellent highway machine. It's not designed for adventurous off-roading (its ground clearance is relatively limited), but as a comfortably commodious all-weather road vehicle, it does well.

How Does It Rate in Terms of Interior Comfort?
The X1's new structure positions the engine sideways rather than longitudinally to open up more space inside the cabin. The overall body is also taller and wider than before. Combined, these changes make for an X1 that's more small SUV than small crossover. In fact, BMW now claims it has the biggest cabin in its class.

Rear-seat passengers benefit most from this, enjoying plenty of space in every direction, a supportive rear bench seat (for outboard occupants, at least) and the impression that the X1 provides more than acceptable accommodation for a long trip. All occupants sit higher, too, as the seats in the front are an inch higher than before, while the rear seats are more than 2.5 inches higher than before.

Cargo space has increased by about 2 cubic feet for a total of 58.7 cubic feet with the seats down. Those rear seats are split 40/20/40 for maximum flexibility and there is a power-folding option for those who want to drop them with the push of a button.

The standard interior finish has also improved, with an upgrade in materials quality. There's an air of luxury heightened by the elegantly expansive dashboard design and a high-sided center console area that splits the space between the driver and front passenger. There's nothing particularly fancy about it, but the overall look and feel is a step above the typical crossover.

What Are Its Closest Competitors?
Audi's Q3 is the closest to the X1 in terms of size, price and mission. With a tight cabin and limited cargo space, the Q3 is now at a distinct advantage to the newly enlarged X1. However, the Q3 is well equipped for the price, quiet and has a well-finished interior.

The Mercedes-Benz GLA is another luxury-branded vehicle in this class. It offers sporty handling, a premium quality interior and plenty of safety features. The downside is poor refinement: The ride is too busy, and there's too much wind and road noise.

If you're willing to take a big step up in price, the Porsche Macan is another compact luxury SUV. For the extra money you get strong performance even in base form, a particularly entertaining drive, a quiet and comfortable ride and a quality interior finish.

Why Should You Consider This Car?
You're looking for a small, nimble luxury-branded crossover with a sharply designed interior and plenty of available features. Or maybe you like the idea of a taller vehicle but prefer the feel of a small sedan from behind the wheel. Either way, the new X1 delivers on both counts in a way its predecessor did not.

Why Should You Think Twice About This Car?
This X1 may be bigger than before, but it's still a very compact SUV. If you need substantial cargo space or real off-road capability, the X1 still falls short.

Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.

Used 2016 BMW X1 Overview

The Used 2016 BMW X1 is offered in the following submodels: X1 SUV. Available styles include xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A). The Used 2016 BMW X1 comes with all wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 8-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2016 BMW X1 comes with a 4 yr./ 50000 mi. basic warranty, a 4 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 4 yr./ 50000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2016 BMW X1?

Price comparisons for Used 2016 BMW X1 trim styles:

  • The Used 2016 BMW X1 xDrive28i is priced between $19,995 and$27,950 with odometer readings between 19139 and90892 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2016 BMW X1s are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2016 BMW X1 for sale near. There are currently 9 used and CPO 2016 X1s listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $19,995 and mileage as low as 19139 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2016 BMW X1.

Can't find a used 2016 BMW X1s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used BMW X1 for sale - 1 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $14,165.

Find a used BMW for sale - 3 great deals out of 22 listings starting at $17,389.

Find a used certified pre-owned BMW X1 for sale - 9 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $8,871.

Find a used certified pre-owned BMW for sale - 8 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $7,430.

Should I lease or buy a 2016 BMW X1?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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