Outsider view: Cannibalism?

Pete Mait

Nowadays, it seems to be regarded as good form to fill niches. With their X1 model, BMW have created a highly dynamic 'just-about' SUV that is positioned somewhere below the X3, reflects our modern lifestyle and extends the model range. So that ought to attract a few more purchasers to the marque. And yet, you can't help asking yourself whether quite a few of these potential customers might not equally have gone for the 3 Series Touring or the X3, which would already qualify them as BMW clientele anyway. Cannibalistic practices of this kind are not new and may well have been factored into the decision making process. It will be interesting to see the extent to which this gamble pays off or whether the Munich-based carmaker has bitten too deeply into its own flesh this time.