Used BMW X1 2009-2015 review

What is it like?

(2009 - 2015)
BMW X1 (09-15)
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What's the used BMW X1 estate like?

The BMW X1 is the smallest of BMW’s SUV offerings, and sits below the X3, X5 and X6 in the company’s range, offering a way into big BMW ownership at a lower price than its more established stablemates.

When it first arrived on the scene in 2009, this first-generation model, also known by its BMW codename E84, was only offered with three diesel engine variants. By the time production ended in 2015, however, the range had grown to encompass five diesels and one petrol.

Both rear-wheel drive (sDrive) and four-wheel drive (xDrive) variants were offered, letting buyers choose between fuel economy and all-weather ability. All X1s of this generation corner tidily, feeling stable and composed, though inconsistent-feeling steering means they aren’t quite as involving to drive as some other BMWs, or indeed rivals such as the Mazda CX-5 and Nissan Qashqai.

Neither is the X1 as comfortable. Firm suspension leaves it feeling rather unsettled, while M Sport versions are fitted with even stiffer springs, as well as large wheels with low-profile tyres, leaving them feeling particularly unpleasant.

Inside, meanwhile, the X1 doesn’t quite have the same high-quality interior feel of other BMWs. There are some cheap, brittle feeling plastics in places, and the dashboard design feels a little more mainstream than you might expect. What’s more, back seat passengers might find leg room to be rather cramped. Still, at least it’s quiet on the move, with wind, road and engine noise all well suppressed.


BMW X1 (09-15)
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