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2016 BMW X1 Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2016 BMW X1 was new.

Scorecard

Interior: 8.2

The redesigned 2016 BMW X1 impresses critics with premium materials throughout a spacious interior. They say the front seats offer a commanding view of the road ahead, and they praise the comfortable rear seats for offering plenty of room. Reviewers appreciate the many features available in the X1, and they say the infotainment system and its touchpad controller are intuitive and user-friendly. The X1 has excellent cargo capacity for the class.

  • "The cabin is nicely appointed with high-quality materials." -- Motor Trend
  • "The redesigned interior is a welcome change in the second-gen X1, with more expensive-feeling materials in the cabin and plenty of standard features. Everything is well laid-out and within easy reach -- BMW does not always get this right -- and the seating position is well-matched to outward visibility." -- AutoWeek
  • "With a larger exterior comes a new and improved interior. New leather and wood trim helps to set the mood inside what turns out to be a very accommodating space." -- Left Lane News
  • "In fact, the cabin is an utterly pleasant space to be in." -- Car and Driver
  • "The X1 is comfortable in all the right places, it's bigger inside than before, and the seating position goes from carlike in the last generation to SUV-level here." -- Autoblog

Seating

The 2016 X1 seats five and comes standard with leatherette upholstery and power-adjustable front seats. Leather upholstery, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, sliding and reclining rear seats and power-folding rear seats are available. The X1’s front seats sit high, which provides an excellent view of the road, according to reviewers. They add that the rear seats are supportive on long trips and offer ample legroom, even with the front seats pushed back.

  • "With the new X1, the rear passengers travel in comfort even when the front seats are pushed way back. For their part, the driver and front passenger sit higher than before. That's not what you're looking for on a racetrack, but it is rather welcome in the everyday commute that this kind of car is typically used for." -- Car and Driver
  • "BMW now claims it has the biggest cabin in its class. Rear-seat passengers benefit most from this, enjoying plenty of space in every direction, a supportive rear bench seat (for outboard occupants, at least) and the impression that the X1 provides more than acceptable accommodation for a long trip. All occupants sit higher, too, as the seats in the front are an inch higher than before, while the rear seats are more than 2.5 inches higher than before." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2016 X1 also has a seating position more akin to a utility vehicle's. The driver and front passenger sit more than an inch higher than in the outgoing model, which felt very much like a car from the driver's seat. The rear seats have been raised more than 2.5 inches. This new seat height gives a more commanding view of the road, one of the things buyers love about crossovers." -- Motor Trend

Interior Features

Standard features in the X1 include automatic climate control, push-button start, a USB port, Bluetooth, HD Radio, a seven-speaker audio system and BMW’s iDrive infotainment system with a 6.5-inch screen. Available features include head-up display, a panoramic moonroof, a 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, satellite radio, smartphone integration, a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warning, collision mitigation and forward collision warning with pedestrian warning. An upgraded iDrive system, with an 8.8-inch display, navigation and a touchpad controller, is also available.

Test drivers report that the climate, audio and infotainment controls are within reach of the driver. They add that the iDrive system is responsive and easy to navigate and that the touchpad controller is intuitive.

See 2016 BMW X1 specs »

  • "The well-executed dashboard resembles those of larger BMW models, and the controls are within easy reach." -- Car and Driver
  • "Other features make themselves noticed including a taller shift lever with a new, lower console and new changeable ambient lighting. While the gauge binnacle offers a simplistic view of the driver's world, the occupants will have a choice of 6.5- or 8.8-inch freestanding high definition displays." -- Left Lane News
  • "In the new dashboard, just above the new asymmetrical center console, is a new generation of BMW's iDrive infotainment, which is to say that's it's the same software that we've grown to love, but with snappier hardware underpinning it. … I did note that the system was responsive when clicking and scrolling around the various functions, and the iDrive controller feels intuitive and is an easy reach in its position on the center console." -- CNET

Cargo

The 2016 X1 has excellent capacity for the class, providing 27.1 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats up and 58.7 cubic feet with them folded down. A power liftgate is standard, and a hands-free power liftgate is available. Automotive writers praise the split-folding rear seats for providing versatility, and they appreciate the convenience of the optional sliding rear seats.

  • "Cargo space has increased by about 2 cubic feet for a total of 58.7 cubic feet with the seats down. Those rear seats are split 40/20/40 for maximum flexibility and there is a power-folding option for those who want to drop them with the push of a button." -- Edmunds
  • "There's an available sliding/reclining rear seat that seems like a no-brainer choice; for $350 extra, it lets you reposition the seat bottom about five inches fore and aft to make more space for people or cargo, and the 60/40-split sections move independently for when you have a combo of persons and things to take to a place." -- Autoblog
  • "Its cabin has more room for people than the Audi Q3, and to boot, there's more boot space for cargo out back. In a three-way comparison with the Q3 and the Mercedes-Benz GLA, the X1 is the most spacious." -- CNET

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