BMW X1 (2015) Review

BMW X1 (2015) At A Glance


+Practical, spacious and good to drive. Diesel engines offer strong performance and low running costs. Primarily front wheel drive. Well-equipped as standard.

-Expensive compared to mainstream rivals like the Nissan Qashqai and Renault Kadjar, but less than an Evoque. Options can add up quickly.

Insurance Groups are between 30–34
On average it achieves 79% of the official MPG figure

With a classy cabin, impressively capable engines, low running costs and generous standard equipment, the 2015 front-wheel drive BMW X1 was a big step up from ithe original X1. Buyers looking at the Mercedes-Benz GLA or Audi Q3 should take note – BMW’s alternative is a real competitor.

Compared to the old X1 the new model looks a lot larger in pictures, but that’s deceptive. It’s actually slightly shorter, though it has increased in width and height a little. That makes for a more spacious cabin than before, with a back row that’s comfortable for adults and a flat, wide, 505-litre load area.

Standard equipment is generous – all models get navigation, dual-zone climate control, Bluetooth, DAB radio and front collision assistance among the basic gear. The front collision assist doesn’t just improve safety, it also lowers insurance premiums, meaning the new X1 is cheaper to insure than before.

It’s cheaper to run too, thanks to reduced emissions and improved fuel economy. The cleanest and most frugal model is the entry-level front-wheel drive sDrive18d diesel, whic has official economy of more than 60mpg. We’d recommend the more powerful, all-wheel drive xDrive20d however, which is still economical but has more get up and go.

The engine range also includes the 192PS xDrive20i petrol and 231PS xDrive25d diesel, as well as an all-wheel drive version of the entry-level 18d diesel. The X1 is at its best with the eight-speed automatic transmission, which uses the standard navigation system to predict the right gear for bends and hills, making for smoother progress, particularly on country roads.

Regardless of engine or transmission the X1 is a good car to drive, with accurate, nicely weighted steering and well-judged suspension that gives good body control without being uncomfortably firm. The X1 works off road too, tackling steep hills and loose surfaces like gravel with aplomb. Serious off-roading might not be possible, but for the average buyer the X1 is more than capable.

There are dozens of crossovers to choose from these days, whether in the form of popular mainstream models like the Nissan Qashqai or more luxurious alternatives such as the Audi Q3. But even in the face of some very serious competition the new-generation BMW X1 is a very impressive car indeed.

BMW X1 xDrive 25d xline 2019 Road Test

Real MPG average for a BMW X1 (2015)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

27–58 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Which warranties are best in terms of cover and cost?
"I'm considering buying a BMW X1 diesel, auto, 4-wheel drive SUV, first registered in March 2017. The new car warranty has expired. The car will be used mainly in rural areas with a mix of short and long journeys. I've been reading about extended warranties available from many sources and it's all a bit confusing. The dealer selling the car offers an RAC-backed warranty, which on this car would cost £750 for three years' cover. I don't know if that is good or bad value. Could you give me some advice concerning which warranties are best in terms of cover and cost?"
It sounds like very good value, but I suspect it won't cover absolutely every potential failure (excluding normal wear and tear items, of course) so it makes sense for you to read the small print. The best warranties are usually offered on manufacturers' 'approved used' schemes. Having said that, it sounds like you do the kind of driving that will keep your car in good mechanical health. Lots of short journeys or long periods of no use tend to be worst for a car.
Answered by Russell Campbell
Which small SUV should I buy?
"With £20,000 to spend on a small SUV, would you recommend a nearly new 1.5 Skoda Karoq or a slightly higher mileage BMW X1?"
We'd go for the Karoq. It's a brilliant small SUV that offers good value for money - although the 1.5 does suffer from hesitation issues. You could consider a Volkswagen Tiguan, too, although you'll be looking at one roughly the same age as an X1. How about a Peugeot 3008 as an alternative? It feels more premium than the Karoq but you'll get a newer one than an X1. We've had fewer issues reported with the 3008, too.
Answered by Andrew Brady
Should I go for a petrol or diesel if I drive 10,000 miles per year?
"I’m buying a BMW X1 but I’m not sure which engine to get between the 1.8 diesel or the 2.0 petrol. I drive around 10,000 miles a year - probably 70/30 motorway/town. I’m told from most dealers that for that amount of miles, I should go petrol. If I was doing anything over 14,000 then diesel. Do you agree?"
I would focus on your daily mileage rather than annual. A DPF on a diesel needs 15-miles per journey to regenerate and burn off the soot it gathers. Anything less than 15-miles per trip is asking for trouble with a diesel.
Answered by Dan Powell
Does remapping affect a car's warranty?
"Will a remap affect the warranty on my BMW X1?"
A remap will invalidate your BMW warranty and be classed as a modification by your insurer and invalidate the cover, if you fail to inform them.
Answered by Dan Powell

What does a BMW X1 (2015) cost?

Buy new from £25,080 (list price from £29,890)