Review: BMW X2 (2018)
Handles well for a crossover. Quiet and comfortable on the motorway. Diesels are very economical.
Cramped rear seats. 18d only comes as a manual. Around £1000 more than an equivalent X1.
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BMW X2 (2018): At A Glance
- On average it achieves 81% of the official MPG figure
We know what you're probably thinking. Why? Indeed, why does BMW need the X2? A car that sort of sits half way between a 1 Series and an X1. But is also a bit like a 3 Series GT.
Yet here we are with exactly that. A coupe-styled crossover (because the world needs that) which is less practical than an X1 but promises to be more 'dynamic'. Not that BMW doesn't have form here - there's the gargantuan X6 and the X4 - but in our opinion the X2 is a better design than those two and is in fact a very handsome thing.
Given its sloping roofline, you won't be surprised to find out it's less spacious than an X1. The boot is smaller (although still reasonably good) and the rear seats are tight on head and legroom. So where's the pay off?
Well it comes from behind the wheel. The X2 handles much better than the X1 on which it is based, with less body roll in corners, sharper steering and better throttle response. The result is a crossover which is actually quite enjoyable to drive. Yes, you read that right.
We'd even go as far as to say it has a bit of character when compared with the competition like the Mercedes-Benz GLA and Audi Q3. The downside of this is the ride. As you'd guess, the ride is noticeably firmer and while not uncomfortable, if it's outright comfort you want, the X1 is a better bet.
The interior is classic modern BMW. So pretty user-friendly but also pretty bland in design. There's no touchscreen, BMW insists in making people use its iDrive dial controller, which really hinders things like Apple CarPlay, but there's no denying the quality of the finish and the feel of the materials used. This is a very nice place to be on a long journey.
Most models are the 20d engine. This 2.0-litre diesel comes as an automatic only - and it suits it superbly - plus it blends performance and economy well with Real MPG showing you can expect a realistic 50mpg. There's also a 18d which comes as a manual and with two-wheel drive. If you're not doing big mileages then the 20i is your best choice. Quiet, smooth and no DPFs to worry about.
The cheapest X2 comes in with a list price of around £30k. On average it's around £1000 more than an X1, depending on which engine you go for. It's certainly more interesting than the X1 - and likely to be a rarer sight - so we can see the appeal, especially given that it handles so well. If you want a crossover with a bit extra, this could be right up your street.
What does a BMW X2 (2018) cost?
BMW X2 (2018): What's It Like Inside?
- Boot space is 470 litres
The X2 doesn't exactly break any boundaries inside. This is essentially a BMW interior by numbers. So it's all very well finished and functional, but hardly what you'd deem interesting. Stylish flourishes are few and far between which is a shame given how striking the styling of the exterior is.
That's not to say there's anything wrong with the cabin of the X2. It echoes the X1 and 3 Series with the same layout that - including a CD slot which, for some reason, BMW thinks should take pride of place - simple air con controls and a colour screen plonked on top of the dash.
That screen is not a touchscreen, instead it requires BMWs iDrive controller dial to navigate. This is pretty easy, even on the move, but it gets frustrating when you're trying to use Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Not that this is unique to BMW. Audi uses a similarly frustrating non-touch system.
But there are plenty of positives here. The driving position is slightly raised over something like a 1 Series but you still feel like you're sitting 'in' rather than on the X2. You get a decent view out so judging the extremities is pretty easy.
Like all BMWs, the seats are excellent with lots of lower back and side support. It means few aches and pains even after a long stint behind the wheel. There's also plenty of legroom up front, so even six-feet tall drivers won't feel hemmed in.
It's not as good in the back for big 'uns though. The sloping roofline means headroom is limited and with the front seats all the way back, you'll find yourself having to origami your legs in and out the back seats. It's fine for kids in car seats and younger teenagers though.
Obviously the X2 is not as practical as the X1, but the boot is a reasonable size for this sort of low-down-crossover-thing with 470 litres of space - that's equivalent to a Honda Civic. It has a wide square opening and a low load lip too, so getting a pushchair or equivalent in is pretty easy.
Child seats that fit a BMW X2 (2018)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the BMW X2 (2018) like to drive?
You won't be surprised to find out that the most popular engine in the X2 is the ubiquitous 20d unit - the same engine that seems to be in every other BMW.
There's a good reason it's so popular though. This is one of the best four-cylinder 2.0-litre diesel engines around when it comes to blending performance and economy. It has 190PS but it's the 400Nm of torque that counts here and means the X2 pulls strongly. If you're on the motorway a lot, you'll appreciate this.
The 20d only comes with xDrive - that's BMW talk for four-wheel drive - but it should be reasonable on fuel. The official figure for economy is close to 59mpg but Real MPG shows that you're realistically going to get 50mpg. Not bad at all for a car with this power.
If it's outright economy you want - and you don't need four-wheel drive, you can opt for the 18d engine. It's the same 2.0-litre diesel but with power reduced to 150PS and less torque at 350Nm. The only fly in the ointment is that the 18d is manual only - if you want a diesel auto you'll have to choose the 20d.
In everyday driving, there's actually little difference between the two and it's not as if the 18d is the poor relation. It's available as an sDrive (two-wheel drive to you and me) which sees economy improve to an official 63mpg with Real MPG showing 52mpg.
The diesels aren't especially quiet - especially on start-up - but at a cruise the sound proofing and aerodynamic profile of the X2 means there's actually very little noise - either from the engine, tyres or wind.
Of course, if you're not covering big mileages then the petrol is your best bet. The X2 comes with the impressive 20i engine - this 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol has 192PS and is very smooth and quiet too. It comes as standard with a seven-speed dual clutch automatic (there's no manual option) which makes it stress-free to drive around town. Plus you don't have to worry about DPF problems.
Around town the slightly raised driving position means it's easy to park. That said the rear view is pretty terrible, but fortunately parking sensors are standard across the range.
Where this X2 differs from the X1 is when it comes to corners. The steering is a lot better and thanks to the stiffer suspension set-up, it has much more agility in bends. It's here where the differences between the X2 and X1 become apparent.
There's less body lean, it's more composed and overall just feels much keener if you drive it with a bit of gusto. There is of course a pay off here. And that's the ride. With that stiffer set-up, you lose some of the comfort of the X1.
It's not terrible, but you're always aware that the ride is somewhat firmer than you'd expect of a crossover. That said, even on M Sport models with sports suspension and bigger alloys, it's comfortable enough on your average A road.
|sDrive 18d||61–63 mpg||9.3 s||119 g/km|
|sDrive 18d Automatic||61–63 mpg||9.3 s||118 g/km|
|sDrive 20i Automatic||48–49 mpg||7.7 s||126 g/km|
|sDrive18i||50–50 mpg||9.6 s||129–130 g/km|
|sDrive18i Automatic||50–50 mpg||9.6 s||129–131 g/km|
|xDrive 18d||57–58 mpg||9.2 s||128 g/km|
|xDrive 20d Automatic||59–60 mpg||7.7 s||121–126 g/km|
|xDrive 20i Automatic||-||-||147–148 g/km|
|xDrive18d Automatic||59–60 mpg||9.4 s||123–127 g/km|
Real MPG average for a BMW X2 (2018)
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.
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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