Think of the 2020 X2 as a more stylish alternative to the subcompact BMW X1 SUV, but one that comes with a few compromises. Its chassis is playful and its engines are eager, but its sportier sheetmetal impinges on cargo space and its narrow rear window creates a few major blind spots. The fire-breathing M35i model is what sets the X2 apart from the workaday X1, and it provided blistering acceleration during our testing. All models come standard with touchscreen infotainment, in-dash navigation, and a smattering of driver-assistance features, but more advanced tech and real luxury features require extra investment.
The X2 launched as a 2019 model and, this being only its sophomore year, BMW hasn't changed much for 2020. Last year's standard 6.5-inch infotainment display has been ditched in favor of the formerly optional 8.8-inch unit; navigation is now also standard across the X2 lineup. Otherwise, the X2 carries on essentially unchanged.
The price of the 2020 BMW X2 starts at $37,395 and goes up to $47,445 depending on the trim and options.
If you're buying the regular sDrive28i (front-wheel drive) or xDrive28i model (all-wheel drive) of the X2, you might be making a mistake. The boxier X1 is cheaper, more practical, and still just as fun to drive as either of those X2 models. However, the X1 can't be had with the X2 M35i's 302-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine that makes this little SUV a more focused performance machine. So, if you're going to do it, we suggest you go all the way and buy the M35i.
The X2 shares its standard powertrain with the boxier X1, which consists of a 228-hp turbocharged four-cylinder, an eight-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive. BMW calls this model the sDrive28i; the xDrive28 is the optional all-wheel-drive version. The engine is a sweetheart: eager to rev, silky-smooth, and plenty gutsy. At our test track, the all-wheel-drive X2 xDrive28i snapped off a decent 6.4-second zero-to-60-mph run; that's 0.1 second behind the X1 xDrive28i and the Volvo XC40 T5. Quicker yet is the Mercedes-Benz GLA250, which managed a 5.8-second time. The high-performance M35i model's engine has been tuned to pump out 302 horsepower and blasted to 60 mph in just 4.6 seconds at our test track. As with the X1, the X2 has a harsh ride—especially with the sport suspension. Driving over rough stretches of road, occupants will feel most every imperfection this subcompact crossover encounters. The trade-off is a high level of agility on a twisty road. It's a joy to pitch into fast corners and rewards the driver with its predictable nature.
The X2 doesn't boast the highest fuel-economy ratings in its segment, but it's still plenty efficient; front-drive models earn up to 32 mpg on the highway, while all-wheel-drive X2s are rated for up to 31 mpg. In our testing, though, the X2 proved to be one of the most efficient crossovers, with a 36-mpg result over our 200-mile highway fuel-economy route. We managed only 29 mpg in the all-wheel-drive X1 and the XC40 T5
While the X2's interior design isn't as expressive as its exterior, the cabin is nicely outfitted and well-built. The driving position is great, and all the X2's controls are within easy reach for the driver. Rear-seat headroom is tight, but otherwise, passenger comfort should be acceptable for most people. BMW offers several upholstery-color options—in both faux and genuine leathers—as well as five different trims. Because of its shapelier exterior, the X2 isn't as practical as the squared-off X1. In our testing, we fit five of our carry-on suitcases behind the rear seat and 15 in total with the rear seats folded, versus seven and 19 for the X1. The X2 is in line with its more stylishly shaped rivals, though, and nearly matched the GLA250 in this test.
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