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Launch: BMW X1

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Kuala Lumpur, 9th October, 2015 – BMW Group Malaysia today unveiled the German firm’s second generation baby SUV(they prefer the term SAV, which stands for Sports Activity Vehicle), the BMW X1. The new X1 features a design in line with BMW’s latest X model design language, with technical improvements thrown in for good measure.

BMW 01

Speaking at the launch event, Mr. Alan Harris, Managing Director and CEO of BMW Group Malaysia said, “The first generation of the BMW X1 created the premium compact segment and redefined the segment to the type of driving pleasure for which BMW X models have become renowned. With its commanding appearance, versatility, innovative connectivity and groundbreaking BMW EfficientDynamics technology, the all-new BMW X1 has all the elements to remain a stand-out player in the segment founded by its predecessor.”

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The new X1 is 53mm taller (1,598mm now, seating position 40mm higher) and at 1,821mm, is 23mm wider than before. While overall length has decreased by 15mm (4,439 mm), rear legroom is up by 37mm. There are gains in boot volume as well – 85 litres, to be exact. Leaving boot space at a healthy 505 litres, expandable to 1,550 litres by folding down the 40:20:40 rear seat arrangement.

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These impressive space gains are made possible by the new front-wheel drive UKL platform with transversely-mounted engines. It’s simple math, really; less length in the engine bay, more length for the cabin. The altered platform also makes the X1 look more like a SUV, and a lot less wagon-like (the original E84 X1 was based on the E91 3 Series Touring and looked like a raised estate), and brings the baby SUV in line with its larger X3 and X5 siblings.

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BMW Group Malaysia has decided to make a single model available in Malaysia, with the BMW X1 sDrive20i getting the nod. The X1 sDrive20i is powered by a twin-scroll turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine that outputs 192hp and 280Nm of torque. The engine is paired with an eight-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox that sends power to the front wheels. Performance is more than adequate, with the baby X1 being able to sprint from 0-100 km/h in 7.7 seconds, with top speed sitting at 225 km/h. Claimed combined average fuel consumption is 5.9 litres per 100km. These economy figures are aided by auto start-stop and Eco Pro Mode.

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One of the interesting new features of the BMW X1 is BMW ConnectedDrive Services and Apps. The X1 is the first BMW in the country to receive this system, which allows access to the BMW Online internet portal via a SIM card embedded in the vehicle, as well as the integration of smartphone apps into the car. These include:

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Intelligent Emergency Call which automatically establishes a connection with the nearest rescue coordination centre through the BMW Call Centre whenever needed – without the use of a mobile phone. It transmits information regarding the vehicle’s current location and the severity of the accident, and can also be triggered manually in case other road users require help.

Concierge Services can be accessed at the push of a button and the driver will be connected with a BMW Call Centre who acts as their “personal assistant” on the road. Whether the destination is a particular restaurant, the nearest ATM or a hotel, the BMW Call Centre agent will be able to assist 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Information of the desired destination can then be sent directly to the navigation system.

Remote Services allow drivers to transform their smartphones into an intelligent and convenient remote control for their vehicle, via the MY Remote app. Locking and unlocking the car for example, can be operated remotely. The headlights of the vehicle can also be turned on temporarily and the horn can be sounded via the smartphone, which is especially useful when trying to locate the vehicle.

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There’s also a parallel parking assistant that measures potential spaces (only when traveling below 35 km/h) and steers the car into the slot (you control the throttle and brake pedals). The X1 also comes fit with BMW Navigation Professional, which is essentially a 6.5-inch screen, accessed via the familiar iDrive controller. The two front seats are also electrically powered and have a memory function.

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The BMW X1 comes with five exterior colour options: Alpine White, Black Sapphire, Mineral Grey, Chestnut Bronze and Mediterranean Blue. The cabin’s Dakota leather upholstery and theme is available in Black or Mocha. Both come with the same piano black trim with red accents, making the brown interior a little less cohesive. BMW now offers a five year unlimited mileage warranty with free scheduled service. The BMW X1 sDrive20i can be yours for RM279,800, on-the-road without insurance.

About Kiron Subhash

The most recent member of the collective, Kiron now follows the team to cover local and international automotive events. He is now training in multimedia journalism, acquiring experience in onsite reporting, feature writing, photography, videography, and social media engagement. Conspicuously influenced by Andrew and Jack in the rewarding life of a biker, Kiron now harbours a deep-seated love for motorcycle riding (and fuel-saving).

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