The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

An all-wheel drive, inline-four powered machine from M Performance? You'd better get used to it...
The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

Here it is, the first ever car from BMW’s M Performance sub-brand with - don’t freak out - an inline-four. It’s based on the X2, which - with a transversely-mounted engine - isn’t exactly ripe for the fitting of a big six.

So, a four-pot it is, but don’t worry, the one fitted to this new ‘X2 M35i’ has plenty of poke. In fact, it’s BMW’s most powerful four-cylinder engine ever, developing 302bhp plus a useful 332lb ft of torque.

The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

Power is fed to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox, and should you wish a particularly brisk exit off the line, there’s a launch control system too. 0-62mph takes 4.9 seconds, and while there’s no word on the top speed yet, it’s almost certainly the usual 155mph electronically-limited affair.

The car sits lower on stiffer springs and passive dampers, and there will be an adaptive setup available optionally. The rear axle has been completely redesigned, while at the front you’ll find a locking M Sport differential.

The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

To ensure the M35i isn’t mistaken for any old X2, it’s been fitted with various bits an pieces finished in Cerium Grey, including the mirror caps, some of the front vents, the new rear spoiler and even the two tailpipes. The exterior is finished off with a set of 19-inch M-Sport ‘715M’ wheels.

The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

On the inside, you’ll find a leather steering wheel with some suitably large paddle shifters for the auto ‘box. There are some particularly lovely-looking M sports seats (see below), a full-colour head-up display and Apple CarPlay connectivity. A lot of that is optional in the European-spec cars, but from what we understand, the X2 M35s destined for the UK will have more kit fitted as standard.

Production will start in November, but European cars won’t start rolling off the production line until March 2019.

The New BMW X2 M35i Is An Inline-Four Preview Of The Next Hot 1-Series

What’s particularly interesting about this car is it inadvertently serves as a preview for something else: the next hot 1-series. For the next generation, the 1er will ditch its rear-drive layout due to its switch to the transverse front/four-wheel drive UKL platform - the same architecture used for the X2.

So it’s now safe-ish to assume that the car - which has already been spotted testing - will use the same 302bhp engine as this X2 (potentially with a little more power), be four-wheel drive and will probably christened M135i.

What do you think of the X2 M135i, and the prospect of an inline-four-powered M135i?



Ok, this is cool

09/07/2018 - 08:24 |
2 | 2

“The first ever M Performance machine with an inline-four”
Umm… are you sure about that?

09/07/2018 - 08:25 |
84 | 14

That’s M Division, not M Performance

09/07/2018 - 08:35 |
80 | 4
Ben Anderson 1

Front wheel drive, inline four, faux wheel drive, M-Performance…

Is BMW okay? Could someone fetch the doctor?

09/07/2018 - 08:37 |
40 | 0

Better get used to it, there’s more to come…

On the plus side, used examples of the M135i are depreciating rather nicely.

09/07/2018 - 08:50 |
2 | 0

If people are okay with the same combination in a AMG, then I see no problem with this car. Especially if you consider this is a “M Performance”, not the full fat “M Power”.

09/07/2018 - 19:03 |
4 | 2

Wait… so 35i now means a 4 cylinder…because logic!

09/07/2018 - 09:06 |
4 | 0
Matt Robinson
Matt Robinson

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Trouble is BMW is stuck with a naming system that worked really well when it had a bunch of N/A engines of different sizes, but less so now it has multiple models that derive their power from differing levels of turbocharging. You can’t have three different cars all called 320i, after all…

09/07/2018 - 10:41 |
10 | 0

The car is nice. But… Those seats… Yeah, red is my favorite color, but that is just too much

09/07/2018 - 10:05 |
2 | 0

What is wrong with BMW? I still remember when the days when they would point-blank refuse to make a FWD car, and now they’re building a performance car with a front-biased 4WD system. BMW’s product planning team all need to be fired.

09/07/2018 - 10:13 |
12 | 0

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Tesla overtook BMW in USA. They need cheap cars that people will buy to survive.

But if you ask me, it would be a better idea to make a different brand and sell econoboxes under it.
The defunct russian AZLK, better known as Moskvich is a brand people associate with BMW because it’s said to have copied the M10 engine. That’s BS ofcourse, but it would open the russian market to them and cheap cars do decently there - Lada, Renault, Hyundai…
Plus the fact that russians will buy it because the brand name is russian and boom, a profitable brand that will provide money for i6 RWD BMWs

09/07/2018 - 11:26 |
0 | 0

Daaaamn!!!! 😭 what are they doing with my favorite automobile brand

09/07/2018 - 10:30 |
0 | 0
FLixy Madfox

Everyone is hating on this because “ohh, it’s so edgy and cool to hate cross overs” but tbh… I think it looks kinda cool. Looks like a lil panda

09/07/2018 - 10:57 |
4 | 4

SUVs(crossovers) are stupid.
Heavier than a hatch,
Less cargo space than a wagon,
Not that high ground clearance.

What’s the point?

09/07/2018 - 11:20 |
4 | 0

It’s a useless “crossover”, it has a transverse mounted engine and front wheel drive in a BMW and it’ll probably be stupidly expensive to boot.

09/07/2018 - 14:13 |
0 | 0

I feared this day would come. The day bmw would turn to FWD. I lost all hope. It’s like when toyota or opel swithed from rwd to fwd. It’s all downhill from here.

09/07/2018 - 11:40 |
4 | 0

Where have you been the last 5 years or so? points at 2 Series Active Tourer

09/07/2018 - 16:11 |
2 | 0

That is because all the competitors of FWD based BMWs are FWD. If you think about it, Audi A3/Merc A-Class which rivals 1 series are FWD, so does Q3/GLA that rivals X1/X2. Mainstream consumers for this category (entry level luxury cars) always have a higher priority for value,space and fuel economy compared to driving dynamics, which make RWD BMWs (more expansive to manufacture, less efficient and smaller on the inside) less competitive. Therefore it makes sense for BMW to switch to FWD since how much money they can make within this category. I honestly think we don’t need to worry until BMW decided to make 3 or 5 series FWD.

09/08/2018 - 15:54 |
4 | 0

I am digging the photo Priority there in the middle, although not the best looking X series BMW, it might have promise…I just took BMW for a more clean shaven design that’s all…

09/07/2018 - 13:45 |
8 | 0



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