Bigger than it looks Driving Dynamics Control with
written on 11-19-2016
xDrive28i 4dr SUV AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 8A)
I recently purchased a 2017 BMW X1 Xdrive. I have previously owned (2) 3 series and (1) 5 series. IMO, the 2017 X1 is the best value for the money of all the other BMW's I have owned. It is not the best handling or planted to the road BMW I've owned, actually it is the least. But, for its class, its absolutely the best handling and value for money. For this class(small CUV), I actually prefer the front drive platform to give it the best overall use of space. This little CUV(I consider it a cuv instead of SUV), because its actually more like a slightly raised hatchback or wagon but looks like a SUV. The 2017 is slightly revised from the complete remodel in 2016. The 2016 has a standard sport suspension but for 2017 they changed suspensions and made the sport or M suspension available as an option with the M sport package only. I assumed I would like the 2016 better but after test driving the 2016 and 2017 models, I actually preferred the 2017 suspension better. IMO, the 2016 is a little harsh and hard. I think the 2016 having a sport suspension and awd the handling is amazing but a little hard for many people interested in a suv. The 2017 has a more comfortable feeling but still offers terrific handling, especially for its class. I really enjoy the std "Driving Dynamics control" with Eco, comfort and sport settings. In sport it changes the heft and feel of the steering and even though it probably doesn't effect the suspension, some how it does effect the over all feeling of the handling and seems to improve it. I drive all the time in sport setting. I have not driven the FWD only model but I am pretty sure the AWD model provides better handling and a more planted feeling. For those of you that don't want to purchase the M sports package that includes sport suspension, the standard suspension with sport setting and awd still offers great handling in the 2017. This car zips around and goes into tight spots pretty easy. Its actually a small car but feels very big inside and that's because of the front wheel drive platform it offers a much better use of space. The back seats offer plenty room. The cargo space in back is plenty big and also there is space underneath the floor on the back that provides even more storage. There is also plenty of head room in the X1. The quality of the plastics are good, typical Teutonic German simple look but a luxury look and feel to dash. The std front seat probably needs a little more cushion but the standard vinyl seats look good. If you are looking for a small suv(cuv) I think the BMW x1 is clearly the best in its class.
My wife and I test-drove a 2017 X1 last week. Happily, we also test-drove an X3, which, in our opinion, made the X1 look terrible. She ended up buying a new X3, which she finds, at this point, to be a wonderful car. Anyway, I own a 2013 X1, which I like very much. I have nothing but good to say about it. But the 2017 we drove was definitely a different car from mine. It looks pretty much the same, although I think it is a little larger. The turbo-four still has the nice kick to it. But the ride was hard -- bumpy and uncomfortable compared to my 2013 and especially compared to the X3 we drove. So, if you are interested in an X1, keep in mind that you are considering a car so different from the older X1's that perhaps it should have been renamed.
I traded a 2014 X1 for a 2017.... I saw it, it looks great! a big improvement, I got inside.. great, another big improvement across the board, really an aggressive/beautiful car inside and out.... then I drove it? wait a minuet, did I get in a BMW or Mercedes? a little less power than my 2014, noticeable in particular when accelerating while moving, such as passing, but even worse the shifting,... gone is the precision, satisfying, almost manual like shifts exactly where they should be in every situation, now shifting feels like standard Mercedes in eco mode, or other quality but soft car. I buy BMW partly due to driving experience, BMW missed a great opportunity to show us a front drive could feel like a BMW, this does not, donīt get me wrong it is a great car, my wife likes it better, says it is more comfortable, and it is, but seat of the pants does not feel as good, it just does not feel 100% BMW due mostly to transmission personality.
We shopped around for quite some time looking for a small/midsize crossover. We test drove literally dozens of vehicles: Mazda, Audi, Benz, Honda, Ford, to name a few. We were between the Volvo XC 60 and the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport. We loved the Volvo but the price at $52K out the door was a little more than we were willing to pay. We were about to settle on the Hyundai (even though it didn't drive especially well) when the night before I read an article about the X1 and figured we'll go check it out before settling on the Hyundai. To our delight, we loved the way the X1 looked, drove, and its interior is bigger than it seems from the outside. The trunk was the biggest surprise to us with the underneath compartment. We loved the car. We compromised on the base X-Drive model MSRP of $36K but got them down to $33K. We took it home that night and have been enjoying it ever since. Nearly 1 month later, we have gotten a good feel for the X1. Our biggest complaints have to do with some basic features lacking in the base model which we knew going in. The fully loaded Hyundai had all the features I'm talking about i.e. LED Headlights, XM Radio, Blind Spot monitoring, Sunroof, backup camera, adaptive cruise, forward collision warning, integrated sunshades, heated seats, navigation to name some big ones. The X1 does have some of these features if you elect certain packages but the price will quickly climb into the 40's and beyond. Ultimately, we chose the BMW because it drove 100 times better than the Hyundai and at the end of the day, no matter how much you dress up a Hyundai it is still a Hyundai and drives as such. We've been averaging 25MPG combined which is better than all the other vehicles we tried especially with an all-wheel drive. Besides our lack of options our only other complaint really is the suspension. As expert reviewers have stated, the X1's suspension is very stiff and you feel it when you go over speed bumps or bumps in the road. But I still prefer the stiffness over the squishyness of the Hyundai's body roll suspension. Another weird thing our X1 lacks is the ability to control the rear dome light from the rear. It's an odd design flaw but we'll get over it. Ultimately, we are very pleased with our decision.
previous owner of earlier bmw's, mini cooper S', porsche and ferrari, as well as a slew of others, I am compelled to disagree with earlier gentleman' statement about harsher ride, this X-1 we bought precisely because as a small cross-over this rides impeccably well, so much more than we ever anticipated, which is why we bought it! Keep it out of sport mode! Or not I use it for performance purposes, my spouse does not, the choice is ours to make. We looked at four door clubman, f-pace jags, MB slams & c's, none do what this car does especially for the price, none!