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2015 BMW X4

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 3/9/2015 Stefan Ogbac

New for 2015

The 2015 X4 is a new addition to BMW's sport utility lineup and slots below the X6 as a smaller, more compact crossover with coupe-like styling. Based on the X3, the X4 shares a similar cabin design and interior layout as its more practical stable mate.

Vehicle Summary

The 2015 BMW X4 is a two-row crossover with coupe-like exterior styling that gives it a distinctive appearance. It is available in M Sport or xLine trims and exclusively with BMW's xDrive all-wheel-drive system.

Overview

Two turbocharged engines are available in the 2015 BMW X4: a 2.0-liter I-4 with 240 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, as well as a 3.0-liter I-6 rated at 300 hp and 300 lb-ft. Both engines are paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission putting power down through all four wheels. Fuel economy is decent, with turbo-four-equipped crossovers rated at 20/28 mpg city/highway and turbo-six variants achieving 19/27 mpg.

While the 2015 X4 xDrive28i's turbo-four provides good acceleration, the X4 xDrive35i 's powerful turbo-six is the better choice with barely any fuel economy sacrifice for the extra 60 hp and 40 lb-ft, giving the car powerful off the line punch and enables it to perform high speed passing and merging maneuvers effortlessly. While the X4's driving dynamics aren't as good as a 3 Series or 4 Series, it handles well for a crossover and goes around corners very well. However, it comes at the sacrifice of ride quality since the X4's suspension is overly stiff and detracts from its overall refinement.

Space for passengers in the 2015 X4 is good up front but the second row is cramped, particularly for taller adults as a result of the crossover's fastback roofline. Total cargo capacity is also smaller than some subcompact cars with up to 49.4 cubic feet of volume with the rear seats folded down. Entry and exit in the second row is also compromised due to the crossover's roofline and seats that are mounted low. Build quality, on the other hand, is excellent with high-grade materials throughout the entire cabin. Additionally, it also has a long list of tech and convenience features including navigation, full LED headlights, surround view camera, head-up display, and heated front and rear seats.

The NHTSA and IIHS have not crash tested the 2015 BMW X4.

What We Think

The 2015 BMW X4 fills another niche in the U.S. car market by offering a compact crossover with coupe-like styling. In a First Test review, we were impressed by the car's driving dynamics and acceleration particularly with the powerful turbo-six engine; however, it comes at the cost of ride quality because the X4 "rides noticeably more stiffly than the X3" but its handling is only slightly better than the crossover it's based on. The X4's exterior styling creates more compromises in terms of livability due to its sloping roofline, which cuts into rear seat room and cargo space, making it less practical than some subcompact cars.

You'll Like

  • Powerful turbo-six in X4 xDrive35i
  • Good handling for a tall crossover

You Won't Like

  • Rough ride
  • Small trunk
  • Cramped rear seats

Key Competitors

  • Range Rover Evoque
  • Porsche Macan
  • Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class
  • Infiniti QX50

Rating

3 star

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