Feedback

BMW X2 sDrive18i 2019 Review - Less Is Much More

Derryn Wong
13/02/2019


When it comes to coupe-SUVs, the BMW X2 sDrive18i proves less truly is more

SINGAPORE

If you can’t make up your mind, then having everything seems like a good idea.
That’s the guiding principle behind coupe-SUVs, though the actual success of realising it is mixed – aphorisms involving the key words ‘cooks+broth’ and  ‘Jack+trades’ come to mind.

BMW pioneered the segment with the X6, then the smaller X4. The latter we tested in the new second-gen iteration in Singapore very recently, and found it a good SUV, but merely so-so as a coupe.
Its small brother, the X2, launched in Singapore last year. Closely related to the X1 small luxury SUV, it also runs on the BMW Group’s UKL small car platform and drivetrain tech, which is also shared with Mini.

Above: The more powerful 192hp BMW X2 sDrive20i – click on the photo to read our review, or watch our video review below


We tested the more expensive X2 sDrive20i powered by a 192hp, 2.0-litre inline four-cylinder engine and haven’t had the chance to try the less powerful model, the X2 sDrive18i until now.
That’s a pity because the X2 sDrive18i proves firmly that less is very much more.

In terms of appearance, both X2 models sold here in Singapore come only in M Sport X trim, which means the same 19-inch wheels, contrast colour fenders, and Frozen Grey front grille that makes the yellow-gold car look a bit like a famous cartoon character.

That’s not a problem in black, the car pulls off the coupe-SUV look wrought small without looking mis-proportioned. If badge recognition is important to you, it’s the only BMW with four badges, since it has two extra roundels on its C-pillars in a nod to the M1 coupe.
Compared to the 20i, the 18i model only lacks the hatch-top spoiler and dual tailpipes.

The interior’s identical too, presenting a more polished experience than the X1 thanks to mood lighting, hexagon-themed trim and upholstery, and the gloss black instruments.
 

There’s plenty of space for rear occupants too, headroom isn’t an issue even with tall people, and 470-litres of boot space (expandable to 1,335-litres) only trails the X1 by 35-litres. It even has extra space under the boot floor, and an automatic tailgate.

Of course the real magic, the ‘coupe’ side of the equation, is how it drives. It may only have 140hp compared to 192hp, but the 1.5-litre, three-cylinder engine has always been one of the BMW Group’s best, as seen in Mini Cooper models – such as the Countryman SUV and Convertible.

There’s a shadow of the off-beat burble that makes Triumph’s modern bikes sound so good ( Audi pulls the same odd-cylinders trick with its inline five engine too) but even that’s enough to make the 18i sound more fun and characterful than pretty much any inline four, so you hardly notice that it’s slower than the 20i at all.

Its feisty torque delivery and interesting soundtrack pair nicely with the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, purring and blurping if you hold the gears and shift late, but it also imbues the X2 with a character and fun that’s almost entirely absent in small to mid-sized luxury cars not of the high-performance, and high price, ilk.

The way it rabbits round corners will put a smile on your face too, the steering and handling have a directness that’s absent in the X1 – not something you can say about the X4 with regards to its ‘normal’ brother, the X3.

The trade-offs are the same, so we repeat what we said of the X2 sDrive20i:
“Which isn’t to say the X2 is faultless either – there’ still the ‘crossover crash’ and busy ride, the windows are small, the A-pillars thick, and it’s not particularly quiet nor refined – but at least a driver clearly knows the positives he or she receives as a trade-off.”

The trade-off is even less, considering the X2 sDrive18i costs $22k less than the X2 sDrive20i, the price difference being exaggerated by the 18i’s VES neutral rating avoiding a $10k penalty unlike the 20i.

Since BMW is the only carmaker with a small coupe-SUV (the closest competitor is the Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe, which is one size up) that makes the X2 sDrive18i the least expensive – and most bang for your buck – car in the coupe-SUV category.
The X2 is the best example of a coupe-SUV to date, and the X2 sDrive18i, by delivering even more driver fun for your dollar, is the one to get.

BMW X2 sDrive18i M Sport X

Engine 1,499cc, inline 3, turbocharged
Power 140hp at 4600-6500rpm
Torque 220Nm at 1480-4200rpm
Gearbox 7-speed dual-clutch
0-100km/h 9.6 seconds  
Top Speed 205km/h
Fuel Efficiency 6.3L/100km
VES Band / CO2 B / 143g/km
Agent Performance Motors Limited
Price S$167,888 with COE
Availability Now

 

Tags:

5 seat 5-door bmw petrol sDrive18i M Sport X SUV x2

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

Related Models

Loading...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

CarBuyer – Revolutionizing The Online Car Marketplace In Singapore

Buy Used And New Cars Online
Start your car buying journey with CarBuyer as we connect you seamlessly to the industry’s best CaseTrust-SVTA accredited car dealerships. As a one stop car online portal you can now buy your new ride, be it a pre-owned car or a brand new car from trusted dealers all over Singapore, all in one place. Our ever expanding listing of quality and covet-worthy cars, new and second hand, from both owners and trusted car dealers, will leave you spoilt for choice. Refine your search by vehicle type, registration year, price, mileage, engine type, transmission, annual depreciation value and more to find the car that best suits your needs, taste and lifestyle. You can even search for your car by dealer or directly by owner.

Sell Your Car In An Instant With Confidence
We all know how selling a car in Singapore can be a daunting task especially for a first time car seller; from trying to get a valuation for your car, finding a trusted dealer, to getting the best quote on your vehicle. CarBuyer understands the hassle and even the costs involved and have as such partnered with Huawei to develop a FIRST in Southeast Asia AI car valuation tool that is able to provide a car’s resale value at the snap of a finger. Backed with a consortium of trusted CaseTrust-SVTA accredited car dealers you can be assured that you are getting the best price for your vehicle and do not have to worry about any hidden costs.

The Ultimate Car Shopping Experience Online
CarBuyer platform is the first of its kind to be backed by Huawei’s Artificial Intelligence and cloud computing, enabling it to be able to offer users transparency and enhanced security, all with the one aim of enhancing customer experience. So come on over to buy and sell used cars online at the best prices at CarBuyer Singapore. Connect easily with dealers in real-time via our online video call feature, or schedule a test drive when you’re ready. Have some questions? Get them answered instantly with our chatbot moderated by our responsive team. Stay in the loop with our car-related tips, reviews and news. Learn the ins-and-outs of your car, as well as global and Singapore’s car updates at your own pace.