The X2 is BMW personified. Yes, there’s the famed M3, or the stolen-from-tomorrow i8, or the punchy 2-Series that recalls the old 2002s. But these cars capture BMW at its most outward self, the cars that it builds because top brass know they give purity to the rest of the bloodline. Empty the showroom of the halo models and you’re left with a lineup best captured by the 2019 BMW X2 – stylish, upscale, and flaunted like jewelry by the young millennials who lap up these upward-mobility machines.
What's New for 2019
An all-new variant known as the M35i adds some breadth to the X2 portfolio. The famed letter M isn’t there for show – it represents a more powerful engine, improved handling, and enough performance bits to let this crossover hit 60 mph in 4.9 seconds. Additionally, the previous model's Convenience and Premium tiers are gone. Instead, each is now its own option package.
Choosing Your BMW X2
The X2 is what BMW calls a Sports Activity Coupe. In everyday English, that translates to a sleeker, swoopier version of the upright X1 upon which it's based on. While the wheelbase stays the same, overhangs are trimmed by three inches and the roofline now sits three inches closer to the ground. Despite the proportional trimming and massaging, total cargo volume remains a healthy 50.1 cubic feet. Comparatively, the X1 has just seven additional cubes of maximum Costco capacity. It's a similar story for the rest of the interior, as the X2 manages to retain nearly all the same key dimensions as its boxier brother. Other than the noticeable loss of head room, the snazzier X2 gives up little in everyday utility.
Most X2s will be built in the volume 28i spec, which harbors a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine under the hood. A twin-scroll turbo, direct injection, and variable valve timing conspire to make 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, the latter fully available at just 1,450 rpm. It’s enough power to merit a zero-to-60 mph time of 6.3 seconds. An eight-speed automatic transmission sends power to the front wheels. All-wheel drive – termed xDrive by BMW – is another $2,000. The M35i is a fresh addition for the 2019 model year. It comes with the right hardware that should silence those eager to dismiss it – forged crankshaft, bigger turbo, more boost, heavy-duty cooling, a trick front differential, and bigger brakes.
As seems to be standard operating procedure with BMW, the X2’s attractively low base price can and probably will quickly balloon once some of the many available options and packages are added. Standalone extras include $500 wireless charging and a wi-fi hotspot, a $875 Harmon Kardon surround-sound audio system, and a $200 sonar-based parking assistant. Dakota Leather is a $1,450 upgrade over the base leatherette.
While the M SportX looks like a nice middle ground between the demure 28i and the demon M35i, we find it too pricey a jump from the lower-spec car and too close for comfort to the genuine performance model. If it were us buying a 2019 BMW X2, we'd either tack on a few options to a standard model or make the jump to the genuinely hot M35i.