Under the bonnet is a range of engines that will be familiar to anyone who has picked up an X1 brochure. Initially, we’ll get the 2.0-litre petrol sDrive20i and the 2.0-litre diesel xDrive20d. The former is bolted to a seven-speed automatic gearbox with front-wheel drive, while the latter is fitted to an eight-speed auto with four-wheel drive. Less powerful petrol and diesel units will follow in the next couple of months, along with a four-wheel drive petrol.
So far, the only engine we’ve sampled is the xDrive20d – no bad thing because BMW predicts it’ll be the top seller here in the UK. Like other 20-badged BMW models, the diesel unit produces a hefty 187bhp – enough for a 0-62mph time that would embarrass more than a few junior hot hatches.
That power is available from low engine revs, making it easy to whizz up to motorway speeds without having to thrash the engine to within an inch of its life. Helping matters is the eight-speed automatic gearbox that can slur smoothly between ratios when you’re being sensible yet shift swiftly when you take control using the paddle shifters behind the steering wheel.