- Good driving dynamics
- Strong engines
- Attention-grabbing looks
- Decent interior space
- Huge price tag with options
- So-so interior
- Not that stylish, so what’s the point?
- Ride can be stiff
features & specs
The 2020 BMW X2 trades utility for styling compared to the related X1.
The 2020 BMW X2 is the most style-oriented bite-size luxury-brand SUV, but it’s largely in a class of one. There’s a reason you don’t see many on the road: paying more for less doesn’t have wide appeal.
For those willing to trade interior space for a sleek roofline, the 2020 X2 rewards with a fun-to-drive nature and a choice of excellent engines. It’s costly at every step of the way, and BMW’s tiered optional equipment makes it hard to find a high-value version. Still, we rate the X2 at 6.6 out of 10 on account of its virtues—sprightly performance and a good warranty. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The X2 comes comes with a 2.0-liter turbo-4 rated in two sets of tune. Most cars—those badged as either front-wheel-drive sDrive28i or all-wheel-drive xDrive28i—use a 228-horsepower engine, while the M35i uses a 302-hp turbo-4. An 8-speed automatic ships power to the wheels with precision, while nicely weighted steering and a firm but composed ride ensure above-average handling. X2s with larger wheels can ride stiffly, even with the optional and rather costly adaptive dampers.
The X2 isn’t a cheap proposition in any form, especially once equipped with features we recommend such as adaptive cruise control. The base 6.5-inch touchscreen looks dinky, though the 8.8-inch display that’s optional and likely fitted to most dealer inventory X2s dresses up the interior a little.
Instead, the 2020 X2 is more about making a statement. Its bold looks work well for the most part, even if it’s not exactly a thing of beauty. Inside, brighter hues add interest, though it looks exactly like the comparatively pedestrian X1 with which it shares its bones.
Good safety scores enhance the X2’s appeal, though we’d be hard-pressed to spend the big bucks BMW asks for style over the X1 that has a more comfortable ride and a more spacious interior.
2020 BMW X2
The 2020 BMW X2 is a standout in some ways, but perfectly ordinary in others.
The 2020 BMW X2 takes the groundbreaking looks that debuted nearly 15 years ago on the X6 and scales them down for a somewhat more accessible price point. It’s stylish, if not exactly attention-grabbing, so we award it a point above average. It’s a 6 on our scale.
Against the E-Pace, the X2 looks busy and confused, though we do like its lower roofline (about 3 inches lower than in the X1) and its chunky rear haunches that suggest more power than is found underhood in most configurations. BMW’s big kidney grilles up front aren’t as oversized here as they are in some of the automaker’s newer designs, and that’s just fine with us.
The best part about the X2 might be its broad palette of colors. Stray from silvers and grays and you’ll find some gorgeous hues that will help the X2 age well.
Inside, the X2 is largely indistinguishable from the X1, though BMW again encourages more color choices here than in its workaday model. The standard 6.5-inch touchscreen is on the small end, but models with navigation now come standard with an upsized 8.8-inch unit that fits better.
2020 BMW X2
The 2020 BMW X2 makes use of some of our favorite engines.
BMW builds some of the world’s best engines, and the 2020 X2 offers two of our favorites underhood. We give it a point for its muscle as well as another for handling that’s a cut above the crowd. The 20202 BMW X2 rates 7 out of 10.
The base engine is a 2.0-liter turbo-4 rated at 228 hp and 258 pound-feet of torque, which sends power to the front or all four wheels through a slick 8-speed automatic transmission. We’ve not driven a front-drive X2, but the all-wheel-drive xDrive28i versions we’ve driven have displayed balanced handling and excellent grip. Fun fact: the X2 is closely related to the Mini Countryman underneath.
The X2 M35i uses a 302-hp version of the turbo-4 and pairs it with the same transmission and all-wheel drive. We don’t have any X2 M35i seat time, but this same engine is used to good effect in other BMWs—namely the M235i that we’ve genuinely enjoyed hustling on winding roads.
BMW makes three suspension setups available: soft-riding base, slightly lowered M Sport, and the Dynamic Handling package that pairs adaptive dampers with an even lowered ride height. All versions are firmer than the X1, and they provide flat, balanced handling with good electric power steering weight. The various drive modes alter throttle response, the transmission’s behavior, and steering heft, and even how the all-wheel-drive system delivers power to the wheels. Just keep in mind that larger wheels on the small X2 can render the ride rougher than you like.
2020 BMW X2
Comfort & Quality
Low roofline aside, the 2020 BMW X2 is reasonably spacious inside.
As long as you’re not hustling the basketball team between practices, the 2020 BMW X2 is a fairly comfortable small crossover SUV. It earns a point above average for its superb front seats, and the decent rear seat means we don’t have to deduct the point there that we do in some other low-roof crossovers. It’s a 7 out of 10 for its comfort.
Up front, the seats feature power adjustment and provide all-day comfort. Rear-seat riders get nearly 37 inches of head room at their disposal, though those with longer legs will find themselves folding up to get comfortable. Rear-seat access is decent thanks to relatively wide doors.
The X2’s cargo area holds less than 22 cubic feet of cargo with the rear seats upright, which is only a little better than most sedans in real-world use since much of that space is above the window line.
Materials-wise, the X2 reveals its humble origins with plenty of low-buck plastics, though the automaker does its best with fake wood accents to impart a classier feel.
2020 BMW X2
The 2020 BMW X2 has performed well in crash tests, though advanced tech is a costly option.
In what crash tests have been performed so far, the 2020 BMW X2 has earned good marks. However, we are surprised at the hoops BMW makes buyers jump through to buy some tech that’s standard on other cars costing half as much.
Until the NHTSA weighs in, we’ll hold off on assigning a safety score for the 2020 X2.
The IIHS says that the X2 is a Top Safety Pick thanks to good crash-test scores and “Acceptable”-rated headlights. The standard collision-avoidance tech earned an “Advanced” score, which is the second-highest rating.
BMW charges $1,000 for adaptive cruise control, but that’s on top of several thousand worth of features required to unlock the tech. That’s a surprise given many of the X2’s rivals come standard with adaptive cruise now.
2020 BMW X2
The 2020 BMW X2 starts in the upper $30,000 range, but don’t expect to find one at that price.
Style isn’t cheap. The 2020 BMW X2 is an expensive little crossover SUV when optioned with the features most buyers will add anyway. We rate it at 8 out of 10 for its good standard fare and for its wide range of optional features, plus another point for BMW’s strong 4-year/50,000-mile warranty.
The base X2 starts at about $37,000, plus $2,000 more with all-wheel drive. That price nets buyers power-adjustable front seats, synthetic leather upholstery, and a 6.5-inch touchscreen with newly standard Apple CarPlay compatibility (the automaker previous charged a monthly fee for the tech). Don’t look for Android Auto compatibility, though.
Most X2s will likely have the $2,350 Convenience Package, which includes keyless ignition, satellite radio, and a power moonroof. The Premium Package costs $1,400 more and includes heated seats plus navigation, and it’s the gateway to adaptive cruise control and other options we figure most buyers will want at this price point. At around $45,000 once you’ve paid extra for that metallic paint and leather seats you really want.
The X2 M35i largely builds on the Convenience Package and starts at about $47,500, which isn’t bad considering its performance.
2020 BMW X2
The powerful 2020 BMW X2 has a thirst for premium unleaded fuel.
The 2020 BMW X2 won’t win any green awards, though it’s not all that much of a guzzler considering its performance. We rate the lineup at 5 out of 10 based on the standard-output turbo-4.
With front-wheel drive, the X2 is rated at 24 mpg city, 32 highway, 27 combined. All-wheel drive dips the highway figure to 31 mpg.
The more powerful X2 M35i checks in at 23/30/26 mpg.
All versions of the X2 use premium unleaded fuel.