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2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i Review: Pro Active

Derryn Wong
23/02/2022

Driving experience : Mature perambulation

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer - 220i Review - Singapore - driving shot, front 3/4

The 2AT was already one of the more involving MPVs around, though as we said that’s not a high bar to cross. It’s still not magically morphed into an M2, but we can say that the car’s on-road poise is much improved, so much so that it’s quite nice to throw around on a piece of twisty tarmac.

The 220i is powered by an updated version of BMW’s familiar 1.5-litre triple-cylinder turbo engine – it says 90 percent of the parts are new, it’s more efficient, and a tad torquier. It does have more go than the old car, but that’s also because it’s the first small/compact BMW with a 48V mild hybrid system.

Another first for the 2: It’s the first small BMW with a mild hybrid system, and in the 230e PHEV, it’s also the first to adapt the very efficient Gen5 electric-drive tech as seen in the iX3 and iX

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i - Review - Singapore - driving shot, front 3/4

But back to the 220i: 156hp/240Nm from the engine alone, with total boost going up to 170hp/280Nm, makes for a sprightly car that gains speed in a pleasing manner, even ascending steep hills outside Malaga.

The often narrow B-roads of the Montes Malaga demand precise steering, good brakes, and suspension sorted enough to shrug off bumps while preserving speed. The 220i scored well on most of those areas, with enough pointiness and confidence-inspiring suspension that allowed us to carry speed into tricky corners filled with bumps and tar snakes. The brakes were underwhelming, but for an MPV it handles good enough to live up to its badge and then some. Pace note: Our test car came with the adaptive, lowered M Suspension, so the base setup will behave differently.

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i - Review - Singapore - engine bay

BMW said it paid attention to improving refinement too, with new engine mounts, more sealing around the C-pillar, lots of aerodynamic work (flat door handles, active aero grille, flat underbody – much of it again cribbed from the iX) and that pays dividends on the highway.

It’s noticeably quieter than before, with less engine noise and vibrations, and at speed less wind noise as well. The suspension of our 220i Luxury dealt with urban roughness well, though on degraded surfaces tyre roar was inevitable.

Like before, the car has a tall seating position by default, which many urban drivers will find useful, though the A-pillars are very thick and block vision somewhat – the generous window cutouts help mitigate this some.

Competition and Conclusion

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i - Review - Singapore - side view

BMW hasn’t confirmed the 220i for a Singapore launch, and the 218i is the only one dead-cert for the Lion City at this moment. 

That said, the 220i that shares the same engine as the Singapore-bound 218i, we therefore expect the 218i to behave similar to the 220i when it comes to handling and refinement, though of course it will have less grunt (136hp compared to 156hp) and no mild hybrid system. The latter could even make the 220i a surprise bargain, if it falls on the right side of the VES divide.

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i - Review - Singapore - front low angle

That 136hp means the 2AT is no longer Cat A, until a 216i appears, and a seven-seater’s absence means it doesn’t have two key things its predecessor does. But for those who want a not-so-boring MPV in the luxury segment, the 2AT could be a front runner. 

True small MPV competition is getting thin on the ground in Singapore, with the Volkswagen Touran and Mercedes-Benz B-Class. The Merc is the direct competitor, it’s also quite luxurious inside, but not nearly as nice to drive as the 2AT. But the real competition comes from Merc’s GLB – the small seven-seat SUV. BMW and Audi have both yet to come up with direct competition for it, but they’d be foolish not to.

Despite the dawn of the SUV, and the maturing of the 2AT sets it up well in different era – it has a poise and presence, perhaps even a contrarian cool, it didn’t have before.

1.Introduction, Design and Appearance
2.Interior and Features, Practicality and space  
3.Driving experience, Competition and Conclusion

2022 BMW 220i Active Tourer Luxury 

2022 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer 220i - Review - Singapore - rear badge model name
DrivetrainGasoline-electric 48V mild hybrid
Engine 1,499cc, inline 3, turbocharged 
Power156hp at 4700-6500rpm
Torque240Nm at 1500-4400rpm 
Gearbox7-speed dual-clutch 
Electric Motor19hp 
BatteryLithium Ion, 0.96kWh
System Power170hp
System Torque 280Nm
0-100km/h8.1 seconds
Top Speed221km/h
Fuel Efficiency6.3L/100km (WLTP avg) 
VES Band TBC
AgentPerformance Motors Limited
PriceS$220,000 with COE (estimate)
S$200,000 with COE (218i, estimate)
Availability March 2022 (218i)
Verdict Looks better, drives better, feels more luxurious – the 2AT has far more crossover appeal, in more than one way 

Pages: 1 2 3

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2 series 220i Active tourer bmw mild hybrid MPV review small

About the Author

Derryn Wong

CarBuyer's chief editor brings 15 years of experience in automotive journalism. Previously, he was the editor for Top Gear Singapore, and a presenter for CNA's Cruise Control motoring segment. He's contributed to The Business Times, Today, and many other publications, and also covered technology as editor of Stuff magazine. An avid motorcyclist and photographer, he is the Chief Slave of two cats. Follow him on Instagram @werryndong

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