BMW X1 sDrive18i Review
Fat-free SUV

Story and Photos by Raymond Lai
9 Sep 2010

A premium SUV that is easy to manage and without the guilt of one. That'll be the BMW X1.

Diet formula

BMW calls it SAV or Sports Activity Vehicle but for simplicity, we generally call the X5 a SUV. Now, BMW has put the X5 on the photocopier, pressed the 60 percent button to give us a cut sized SAV in the form of the X1.

It was logical for BMW to launch something like the X1 to the market as none of its immediate rivals (read Audi and Mercedes-Benz) offer a compact premium SUV that is roughly the size of the popular Volkswagen Golf. With the X1, BMW has a head start over Audi in this segment as the latter's Q3 will only be out next year at the earliest.

Despite its ‘1' moniker, the X1 is actually based on the 3 Series rather than the 1 Series. At 4454mm in length, 1798mm wide and 1545mm tall, the X1 is significantly more compact than the soon-to-be-replaced 4569mm, 1987mm and 1674mm X3. Compared to the 3 Series saloon, the X1 is 77mm shorter but it is a significant 215mm longer than the five-door 1 Series hatchback. The X1 looks very well-proportioned indeed for a compact SUV.

The nose treatment looks far more successful than the regular 1 series models'. The size of the X1's headlamps and double kidney grille at least appear proportionate to the overall size of the car - the 1 Series models have headlamps that look too big for the car's relatively petite dimensions. Along the flanks, the X1 is pure BMW - there's that characteristic Hoftmeister kink on the rear pillar while the black plastic wheel arch extensions and matte aluminium side sills toughen up the X1's stance a tad.

With less than generous ground clearance, it is pretty obvious that the X1 is not a SUV made to go off tarmac, tackle boulders and rocks or bath itself in mud. All in all, the X1 isn't exactly the prettiest SUV around but it looks well-proportioned and rather purposeful and not forgetting that it looks far better than the soon-to-be-replaced X3.

Due to the X1's compact dimensions and relatively low ride height though, it doesn't have the presence and sense of aloofness that is normally associated with premium brand SUVs. This can be a disadvantage to women buyers who typically want an SUV as they feel more secure to drive such a big, tall and imposing car.


Sell Fast With Ease - Oneshift

With Oneshift, you get:
  Best value for your car    A peace of mind when selling    Fast sale from start to end


Best offer with no obligations.
Start Now!

I agree to the collection, use and disclosure of my personal data by Carousell and/or such other third party (as may be necessary) and to be contacted (via email, phone call and/or text message) for any purposes in connection with the application of and transaction of the vehicle, in accordance with the Personal Data Protection Act 2012 and Carousell's Privacy Policy.

Very good experience. Quick and good offers. Friendly and responsive from the beginning. Thank you very much

Ngoi Shee hien - 6 days ago

Able to sell for almost twice what a secondhand dealer will quote. Nice experience

Muhammad Ariff - 1 week ago

Ren'Ai is a very helpful and resourceful chap who went thru extra length to secure the addition 1k my wife was hoping to close the deal. I will not hesitate to recommend your great services and staff to my friends who need to sell their cars.

Chen Wenping - 1 week ago

A very responsive and excellent platform. Appreciate the assistance. Sold my car at a good price very quickly. Thank you!

Saravanan - 1 week ago

Thanks for the efficient and reliable service in successfully sale of my car to the highest bidder in a very short period. I'm very thankful to your support group for the splendid effort. I will definitely recommend to all my friends Thanks

Thaygarajah - 2 weeks ago

The overall experience in selling on OneShift has been very easy and smooth from start to finish! Prices quoted were very reasonable and subsequent dealings with the dealer was fast and efficient. Highly recommended for a hassle free experience!

John Ho - 1 month ago

Sold my car thru OneShift when I happened to come across the ad on carousell. The entire process was smooth, fast and transparent. It was really convenient and best of all, the offer was much better than other platforms, thumbs up!

Chua yih leng - 1 month ago

Sold my car at a reasonable price. From the time the dealer inspected the car to payment and vehicle transfer, 20 min. Thank you OneShift!

Mr Seet - 1 month ago

I strongly recommended OneShift by Carousell for selling my car for more market value. Service also are professional and very good. They understand your capacity beyond your needs negotiation process. Very good service.

Doria Santiago - 1 month ago

I didn't know what to expect. First time user. An awesome experience. Special thanks to Ren'Ai. She did such a great job. Always communicates well, knows her way around everything, patient, courteous and most importantly she got the job done impeccably!

Sylvia Goh - 1 month ago


Engine Capacity 1995cc
Engine Type Inline 4
Power 150bhp @ 6400rpm
Torque 200Nm @ 3600rpm
Power to Weight 99.7 bhp per ton


Acceleration 10.4s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 200 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 11.9 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 6 -speed Auto Tiptronic
Drive Type F4


Body Type SUV
(L x W x H)
(4454 x 1798 x 1545) mm
Wheelbase 2760 mm
Kerb Weight 1505 kg


Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Ventilated Discs