BMW isn't one to shy away from filling a market sector – even if there wasn't much of a gap to fill in the first place. You only need to look at the X6 coupe-SUV, the 4-Series Gran Tourer four-door coupe-hatchback or the 2-Series Gran Tourer 225xe Mini-based hybrid MPV for that. Now, though, the brand has revealed its latest niche-busting vehicle – the X2.
Slotting between the X1 and X3 SUVs, the X2 aims to be a more stylish option with youthful appeal – pitched to compete with the Audi Q2, Volvo XC40 and Jaguar E-Pace. It shares its wheelbase with the X1, but it's two centimetres shorter and seven centimetres lower, making it a far more sleek and slinky offering.
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Unlike lots of cars, the X2 made its way from motor show concept to real-life vehicle virtually unchanged. It features a slim glasshouse, a newly shaped kidney grille and BMW badges on the C-pillar – a hark back to the M1 supercar.
The X2 is offered in SE, Sport, M Sport and M Sport X trims, but from launch there will only be a single engine choice – a 2.0-litre diesel with 188bhp and 400Nm of torque, badged 20d. It's capable of 0-60mph in 7.5 seconds, while returning an official combined fuel economy figure of 61.4mpg – while mated to four-wheel drive.
Later in the year, more engines will be added – a lower-powered diesel with either front- or four-wheel drive, or a front-wheel drive petrol model. Sharing the UKL1 platform with the BMW X1 and the Mini Countryman means the X2 will be limited to four-cylinder engines, but there's the possibility of a hybrid powertrain in future.
Inside, it's business as usual for BMW. There's the familiar iDrive infotainment system, paired as standard to a 6.5-inch display which can be upgraded to an 8.8-inch unit for an additional cost. The driver-focused cabin is broadly similar to that of the X1, and will offer a heads-up display and WiFi hotspot. However, disappointingly for a car aimed at young and funky buyers, Apple CarPlay isn't standard and Android Auto isn't even available as an option.
The X2 is priced from £33,980 at launch for the xDrive20d model.