Review: 2024 BMW X2


If you are looking for a premium or luxury SUV, BMW has almost 10 different SUV options in their model lineup, including EVs. The popularity of the X3 has severely overshadowed the X2, people usually choose either X1 or X4 if they want a coupe-like silhouette, the X2 has always been the most underrated SUV in the model lineup. The new X2 is here to change the perception, it not only shares the platform with an X1, but it offers much sharper looks for younger families.

The Looks – Exterior and Interior

It is really hard to design a good-looking SUV without experimental attempts, especially for a brand that has several types of crossovers. The X2 represents the brand’s latest design language with a lot of sharp angles, bold lines and aggressive looks especially in the front fascia. The biggest criticism for the outgoing gen X2 is the design language, the bland exterior and interior were the main reasons why it didn’t stand out. The new X2 definitely stands out especially when it comes to the looks department, it looks unique, modern and sporty while carrying the traditional BMW design features.

One of the few reasons why you would choose the X2 over an X1 is the rear end, it gives you that coupe-like side profile with much sportier looks. There aren’t many sharp lines from the side profile, but it still gives you a sportier vibe with colour-matched fender flares, and huge 20″ wheels wrapped with Continental all seasons.

The rear end definitely looks unique but in a positive way. The sporty design language continues here, but surprisingly there are no exhaust tips. The rear bumper is mostly covered with glossy black accents which helps with the overall upscale looks of the vehicle. The rear window goes all the way to the taillights, which gives you relatively better visibility. The trunk opening is quite wide, but the floor line is relatively higher than the competition which makes it harder to load heavier items.

The interior design is unsurprisingly identical to the BMW X1 behind the wheel, and there is nothing wrong with it. It offers the right amount of soft-touch materials, with leather-wrapped surfaces that you touch frequently, with a minimal amount of hard-touch plastics that you don’t reach often. For areas with hard-touch plastics, the diversity of colour and materials is impressive for the price range.

BMW has been criticized for adding more tech and removing physical controls with their latest models, and the trend continues here. There are some improvements especially since we reviewed the X1 last year, the infotainment system looks a little bit more intuitive and essential features can be accessed much quicker than going through a list of features like an Android phone. You can still do that, but the shortcuts and static buttons like HVAC controls and menu buttons are all located at the bottom of the screen. BMW also added static buttons on the left side of the screen, like Media, Telephone and Navigation.

The best part about the latest digitalization trend is the digital gauge cluster BMW has been implementing for the last few years. It offers the best digital cluster by far, compared to anything else in this segment. It not only offers all information in a very simplified fashion, but the graphics are really cool, and you can also move your Google Maps screen to the cluster and use the touchscreen for something else.

The center console is the most unique part of the whole interior design. The center console is located up high where you can rest your arm easily, but there is a big open storage area to place your stuff. It gives more practicality and a more open feeling compared to the traditional center console layout. The seating position can accommodate different types of drivers with different sizes. The optional M package offers better side bolstering, and the front seats offer decent adjustment options with manual thigh support.

The X2 offers a decent amount of creature comforts for the rear seat passengers such as USB-C ports and air vents, but this is still a subcompact luxury SUV with limited interior space. To make things worse, a sloping roofline means it has even more limited headroom, especially for taller adults. However, I found it was surprisingly livable due to the headliner located as high as possible. At 6’1″, my head slightly touches the headliner if I sit upright, but I still have a small amount of headroom if I sit in a natural position. The legroom is also acceptable, but for rear-facing child seats, you have to move the front passenger seat forward to have enough space.

The trunk space is where you really feel the difference compared to the X1, but it is a significant jump compared to the outgoing model. The 2024 X2 offers 716 litres of space behind the rear seats, and a 40:20:40 rear seat configuration so you can fold the middle row to place longer items, the rear seats would still be usable. That’s where you choose if you want the maximum practicality or better looks, BMW offers options for both types of shoppers with the X1 and X2.

The Drive – Specs & Experience

The new X2 is powered by a 241 horsepower turbocharged 2.0 litre inline-four engine, which is paired with a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. There is a faster version of the X2, if you choose the M35i xDrive, which offers 312 horsepower thanks to the upgraded internals and extra boost pressure. Like the X1, the new X2 is only available with 4-cylinder engine options, and a standard xDrive AWD system regardless of which engine you choose.

Normally there aren’t many things to brag about the driving dynamics of an SUV, but the X2 was surprisingly good, especially for a non-M variant. Our tester is the xDrive 28i model, which offers a decent amount of roll-on power but it doesn’t fall on its face at higher RPM, making it more suitable for spirited driving and offers a hothatch level of performance. It is not the smoothest engine by any means, but it offers a nice balance of power, torque curve and fuel economy.

The dual-clutch move is interesting though, BMW moved away from dual-clutch transmissions a few years ago, but only used them for performance-oriented options. The time has changed, now BMW uses torque-converted automatic transmission for performance entries but uses DCT with entry-level models like the X1 and X2. The 7-speed DCT works well for the most part, but people with mechanical sympathy would easily understand this isn’t as smooth as a traditional torque-converted transmission.

From a performance perspective, the 7-speed DCT works very well. I love the shift kicks when it upshifts, adding an extra layer of drama. When driving normally, the upshifts and downshifts are really smooth on its own. The only noticeable difference is low-speed action and when you come to a full stop, it cannot be as smooth as the 8-speed we find in other BMW models, or even other dual-clutch transmissions offered by other German entries.

Driving the X2 feels very similar to the X1 behind the steering wheel, it offers just a tiny bit firmer ride, but with a very direct front-end feeling. The steering feeling is numb like most modern vehicles, but the steering is very responsive for any sort of input, it almost makes you question if you are driving an SUV or a hot-hatch.

The firmly sprung suspension gives you a lot of confidence in the mid-corner, but you feel the overall weight and higher center of gravity when you push the X2 to its limits. The standard xDrive system works really well despite having a horizontally placed engine, there is minimal to no understeering at the limit. The all-wheel-drive system sends power to the rear wheels with more throttle input, even though it is technically a front-wheel-biased AWD system.

The Verdict

SUVs and Crossovers have been BMW’s strong suit since they released the first X5 back in the 1990s. There is a reason why they have more entries than the rivals, simply because they sell much more than the direct competition. No matter how controversial their most recent design language is, one thing that they do great is putting together a well-built product with great interior quality, the wow factor with great driving dynamics, which we also find the same formula in the new X2. It may not be the right fit for the masses, but if you are looking for a less family-friendly crossover than an X1 with better looks, the X2 might be the right answer for small families.

Engine2.0-litre turbocharged inline-4
Transmission & Drivetrain7-speed dual clutch & xDrive all-wheel-drive
Max power (combined)241 hp @ 4500 rpm
Max torque (combined)295 lb-ft @ 1500 rpm
0-100 km/h5.8 sec
Curb Weight3803 lbs – 1725 kg
Fuel Economy (observed)23 MPG – 10.2 L/100 km
Price (starting from)$48,800 CAD

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