The 2014 BMW X1 has a safety-feature set that's respectable, but nowhere near as impressive as BMW's larger vehicles. Active-safety extras are missing from the menu, and crash-test ratings are quite good, but with a noteworthy blemish.
While the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hasn't rated the BMW X1—and likely won't—the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has given the X1 top 'good' tests for frontal, side, and rear impact, as well as a 'good' score for roof strength. But it earned a potentially worrisome 'marginal' score in the new, more rigorous small overlap frontal test—a test that simulates a collision with a pole or tree.
The X1 has the mandatory airbags and stability control, and also offers a rearview camera and Bluetooth as options. In this price class, we think those items should be standard, but the German automakers as a group lag behind their Korean and American competition in that respect.
Visibility is good for the driver, even with the X1's relatively small rear hatch glass and tall headrests.
Adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitors, or lane-departure warning systems aren't available either. That's technology we think has some limited application for safety, too.