By Chris Paukert
Small crossovers are as popular among coveted young consumers as "Game of Thrones" is these days, so it's no surprise that BMW is set to expand its model range with the new X2 previewed here.
The new compact SUV is expected to be very similar in execution to BMW's current X1, albeit with more streamlined "Sports Activity Coupe" bodywork. That's typically Bavarian parlance for "raked rear window," a styling change that has proven effective -- and profitable -- in models like the X4 and X6.
However, as these first photos suggests, the X2 looks like it has a more vertically oriented backlight than its siblings would lead you to believe -- probably because its small footprint wouldn't allow for steeply angled rear glass. Instead, the X2 looks to have a less tapered windowline that should help preserve second-row headroom and cargo space.
The new X2 is expected to ride atop the same UKL platform as the aforementioned X1, a modular architecture that also underpins Mini's current product range. That means it's fair to assume all-wheel drive will be on offer, along with a version of 2.0-liter BMW TwinPower Turbo four-cylinder engine. In X1 guise, the latter is good for 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, enabling an official 0-60 mph time of 6.3 seconds.
As with its X1 relative, don't expect much in the way of off-road ability -- the fact that the first images of this model were taken in a cityscape is no accident -- BMW is explicitly targeting young urban buyers.
BMW hasn't said when the new X2 will bow, but given the timing of these official camouflage teaser images, a debut at September's Frankfurt Motor Show seems likely.
Also unconfirmed are plans for North American sales, but it would be a surprise if it's not offered in here, as it's expected to carry higher profit margins than the already-successful X1. If and when the X2 does hit our market, expect base X2 pricing be higher than the (nearly $37,000) X1. A base MSRP nudging against the $40,000 barrier, where it would slot just underneath BMW's larger X3 seems likely.