New BMW iX1 vs Genesis GV60 vs Nissan Ariya: practicality

The iX1 is BMW’s smallest electric SUV, following hot on the heels of the well-received iX3 and iX. So, should established rivals from Genesis and Nissan be worried?...

New BMW iX1 rear space

Space and practicality

Front space, rear space, seating flexibility, boot

Our trio are similar in size (less than 10cm separates them for length), and yet there are big differences between them when it comes to practicality.

Let’s start with the most family-friendly option: the Nissan Ariya. It has so much leg room in the back that your rear passengers might think they’re sitting in a long-wheelbase luxury limo. There’s loads of head room, too, especially if you steer clear of the optional panoramic glass roof (standard on pricier Evolve trim).

Nissan Ariya rear space

The BMW iX1 isn’t far behind and still has more than enough leg room for a couple of six-footers (or three at a push, although they’ll have less shoulder room than in the other two). Again, the optional panoramic roof (fitted to our test car) takes its toll on rear head room, but it’s still fine unless you happen to be exceptionally tall.

The Genesis GV60 has the least knee room by some margin, the least space for your feet under its front seats and, provided you’ve avoided a glass roof in the other two cars, the least head room. Six-footers are likely to find their heads brushing the ceiling if they lean back and try to use the head restraints. Still, the GV60 has the most comfortable and supportive rear seats, and (as in the other two) you can adjust the angle of the seatbacks if you want to relax on long journeys.

By a small margin, the iX1 has the largest boot, but the Ariya’s is barely any less practical and can swallow the same number of carry-on suitcases (eight) beneath its load cover. The GV60’s boot is less accommodating, accepting six cases, although there’s still more cargo space than in a Volkswagen Golf, so you're hardly going to struggle with the weekly shop. 

Genesis GV60 rear space

In addition, the GV60 is the only one with a small amount of extra storage under its bonnet; you can stow the charging cables there if you want, or leave the space free for delicate items you don't want sliding around the main boot. All three have further storage space under their boot floors, too. 

Folding down the rear seats in any of our contenders leaves a flat extended load area for trips to the tip, although the fact that the iX1's seatbacks split in a 40/20/40 arrangement (rather than 60/40) gives some welcome extra flexibility. Meanwhile, all three have electric tailgates.

Boot space


New BMW iX1 boot space

Boot 490-1495 litres Suitcases 8

Genesis GV60

Genesis GV60 boot space

Boot 432-1460 litres Suitcases 6

Nissan Ariya

Nissan Ariya boot space

Boot 466-1348 litres Suitcases 8

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