UK DRIVE: 2023 BMW all-electric iX1. Has BMW lost the magic? / Electrifying
Electric car, which you may have noticed, looks nothing like BMWs previous all, electric entry level, electric car, the i3. Yes, its a compact SUV, just like everybody, elses compact SUV, but is this just another entry into an already busy Market Im here somewhere in the Cotswolds, to have a look at this ix 1 today? So here are our six favorite things about the new BMW ix1. Now I know what youre thinking this isnt an avant garde road going concept. Car made from Pure unobtainium, like the I3, was its a bit well normal, but heres the thing. Much as we love the I3 for its crazy doors and weird looks the slightly unpalatable Truth For Us, Geeks and dreamers. So the car like this is going to be more practical, usable and, dare I say it more visually acceptable to a much bigger audience. That means this structure has been designed to accommodate both an electric drivetrain and a petrol and Diesel one. Now that does have its downsides, but well come on to that a bit later Ill. Let you make your own mind up whether you think this is a pleasing bit of design or not, but by modern BMW standards, its all very nicely proportioned, if youre thinking about going electric, whether you dont want to Telegraph it to the world. This could be the perfect car for you. You dont even need to have the blue accents that often come with BMW. I products you can delete those as an option.
The interior I like youve, got this lovely twin screen. Infotainment screen here its curved so its easier to reach the furthest reaches of it. The interior quality is really good, normal top notch, BMW stuff and if youre leggy, like me, youll, be pleased to know theres plenty of reach and rake adjustment on the seats and the steering wheel. And I really like this floating center console. It puts all the major controls like the drive selector, exactly where you want them to be, but youve also got all this kind of useful space under here with a phone charger there, its nice not to have a big central unit there to pinch your legs in As youre driving, BMW has absorbed a lot of the cabin functions into the infotainment system, so where the old X1 had buttons for things like the heating, this one doesnt. That said the system is quick to react and the quality of the screen is absolutely First Rate. Now interesting, this is the eighth generation of BMWs iDrive system and its the first one that does away without the normal iDrive wheel now BMWs say this is because its a touch screen its a lot easier to reach, but Im not sure. I find it a little bit more distracting to use the touch screen as best as a lot of tiles on there theres a lot of things going on theres, also some Shortcut buttons, but when youre sitting in the normal driving position, theyre theyre hidden.
So you have to bend your head around to have a look at where they are back here, its a bit disappointing. To be honest, the problem with building a car that can accept multiple fuels, so petrol, Diesel and electric is that you always end up with a degree of compromise, certainly in terms of cabin space. Ive got this front seat set up for me, and its quite tight on Space. Youve also got a small, its, not a huge one. You get a small transmission tunnel here, and it does mean that your feet are stuck in the same position for the whole journey. The boot has to be said is very good for this size of car, its 490 liters of space in here, and it comes with a fantastic Square opening, and that sounds really dull. But it really matters when youre trying to load in big things like a bike or a couple of Golden Retrievers theres. Also, this little handy cubby here for your cables and if you tumble the seats down you get 1495 liters of space, Frank fans, Im, afraid youre going to be disappointed because the ix1 doesnt have one. You can, however, put things on the roof and you can tow. The ix. 1 is rated for up to 1200 kilos for towing now underneath the floor of this ix, 1 is a 67 kilowatt hour battery which delivers a wltp range of 272 miles. Now we reckon thatll be about 220 230 in the real world range and thats, not really brilliant.
For a 50 Grand car were at a stage now, where, with every new electric car thats being launched, it seems to move the game on in terms of range not entirely sure this does like the battery and range the ix 1s charging stats are good rather than Spectacular, it can take a DC charge on a rapid charger at 130 kilowatts and can be spec with a 22 kilowatt AC onboard charger. If youre happy to hit the options list. 11. Kilowatts is the standard figure if you dont a 10 to 80 percent charge on 150 kilowatt. Charger will take around 30 minutes on this or, if youre, looking to do a quick, splashing Dash youll get around 75 miles in 10 minutes theres. Also, some clever stuff going on with the infotainment system. If you use the built in navigation, the range gasometer is a lot more accurate because it knows the kind of Roads youll be using and if you put a charger as your destination or Waypoint, the car will precondition the battery to make sure its at the perfect Temperature to accept a charge which, as no doubt many of you will point out in the comments below, is something Tesla has been doing for years, better late than never right. As for the bits that make it go, the ix 1 has Motors front and rear, but in normal conditions its the one at the front that does all the hard graft Drive is split between the front and back axles by a very clever transfer system that was Developed for the IX combined, they generate 268 horsepower, but that can rise to 308 horsepower.
If you use the Boost paddle behind the steering wheel, it gives you a 40 brake horsepower boost for 10 seconds. So if you absolutely have to win the traffic light, Grand Prix, its a really useful thing to have – and it does feel properly quick BMW claim a naught 62 time of 5.7 seconds and it fills every bit as quick as those figures suggest, like all electric cars Theres, a great watch of torque that comes through and pushes you back into these lovely seats. Every time you hit the throttle and if youre one of those drivers who loves to fiddle with the regen as youre driving well, this is going to be the perfect car for you. There are four levels of regen available in the ix. 1 were in adaptive now, which is really quite clever, because it uses information from the navigation system and cameras at the front of the car to automatically adjust the amount of regen that comes in as youre driving. So, for example, when youre on a Motorway, itll cost a lot more and when youre driving in towns or if the camera knows that youre coming up to a corner like this one up here, itll regen a little bit harder than it would normally. It works really. Well and if you dont like the Adaptive regen and it does take a bit of getting used to, you – can manually select it by pressing this button here and select one of three different levels.
And if you want one pedal driving, you just click into B. On the drive selector now in terms of ride quality, the is1 is pretty good if youre moving to this car after an I3, its going to feel like an absolute magic carpet, its on 20 inch wheels this car and you can feel the firmness, but, generally speaking It absorbs bumps really well now the ix1 comes with some some interesting driving modes. If youre used to sport Eco normal, that kind of thing youll be in for a bit of a surprise, because there are quite a few different modes that Ive never seen before. We can obviously choose sport, which gives you maximum power efficient, which maximizes the amount of regen and generally tries to extend your range, but theres. Also one called expressive Im going to hit that now. Oh, the seat, massaging comes in and weve got some sort of relaxing Tunes coming through the stereo, which is a bit unusual. Then you have relax, which press that see what that does, oh, it says, were relaxed driving in a pleasant atmosphere. The dash display is only giving me the speed Im doing and I can hear some more relaxing Tunes through the stereo, its also a medical digital art which, if I select that well its drawn the dashboard with a sort of fireworks, sort of picture and everything else. Thats kind of gone purple again it just uh Im entirely sure what the point of it is, but its nice to have.
If you select sport mode, you have the full power all the time, so thats the full 308 horsepower driving both front and rear axles. If you dont want all the other bits that come with sport mode, but you do need to have a little extra push of power to get away from the lights or overtake someone. You can use this boost lever here on the steering wheel. It gives you a 10 second burst of full power and it counts it down on the little timer on the dashboard to show you how long youve got left in terms of efficiency. Its a bit hard to tell weve only been driving the car for 20 minutes and the team of BMW reset all the values before we left its showing 3.1 miles per kilowatt for the short drive weve been on so far. But we have been testing sport mode and the Boost, but I would expect it to be a little bit higher on normal roads. Well have to wait until we get the car in the UK early next year to find out what it can really do. In terms of price, the ix 1 starts at 52 255 pounds for the x line, trim that gets you stuff, like 18 inch wheels, parking, sensors and a rear view camera, along with those cool interior screens as standard upgrade to the M sport trim, which costs 54 960 pounds and you get 19 inch Wheels, adaptive suspension, adaptive, LED headlights and wireless charging.
The order books for the ix 1 are open now and the first UK customers will take delivery in late January, so whats the verdict. Well, if the I3 hadnt existed well be saying this is a perfectly competent electric SUV, but the fact that it does replace the I3 unofficially as BMWs entry level electric car. We have to look at it in a slightly different way. Im sure this will sell far more cars to far more people who would never would have considered buying an I3. But you cant help feeling that a bit of the BMW magic has been lost along the way you can check out the full review over on electrifying.com for all the important facts and stats well be driving a UK version of this car early next year.