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Hauls More Than Just Cargo: 2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Test Drive

With controversial styling and multiple identities, the 2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i comes to us trying to fill a number of different roles. On the one hand, it tries to be a well-sorted crossover by offering things like all-wheel-drive and some decent storage. Yet on the other, it seeks to appeal to those looking for a sports sedan or grand touring car. In short, the 2019 BMW X4 is the answer to the automotive question that I’m not sure anyone asked. But once you’re behind the wheel, you’ll realize it’s a BMW through and through.

BMW X4

2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Exterior

Not a coupe, or sedan, nor a crossover, the X4 xDrive 30i is somewhat of an oddity. From the front there’s no mistaking it as anything but a BMW, with its kidney bean grille and distinctive LED trimmed projector beam headlamps. Move rearward, however, and the lines begin to blur. But blurry or not, there’s an appeal to the X4 that’s somewhat bewildering.

For instance, the idea that you can potentially have your cake and eat it too is nice, and the X4 supports that by offering increased ground clearance and large 19-inch alloys that sit under pronounced wheel wells. It’s not an off-roader mind you, but its rugged appearance makes one think of venturing onward when the pavement ends. And while a sloping rear hatch does limit rear passenger headroom, it works beautifully as an easy-access rear lift gate. That said, I’m constantly conflicted with this thing. From a design perspective, BMW stylists have done a marvelous job with the body lines, but at days end, I’m left wondering why I shouldn’t just buy an X3, or better still, a 4-Series Gran Coupe. Granted, this is not a bad dilemma to have, but it is a dilemma nonetheless.

BMW X4

2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Interior

So where the exterior of the X4 is somewhat confusing, the interior is on point. By combining Tacora Red Vemasca leather sport seats ($1,700.00 option), a large panoramic moonroof, along with an infotainment system that brings fourth premium sound, navigation and HD radio, the cabin of the X4 is the bright spot in the package. The leather and heated steering wheel are of the perfect thickness, and the audio quality makes one feel as though they’re sitting in their own living room. Combine that with the 10.25-inch iDrive touchscreen and one soon realizes that optimizing the X4 to suit their needs is literally at their fingertips.

Our dash was home to digitally inspired analog gauges that featured customizable readouts for the four different drive modes. Then there was the surprisingly analog dual zone HVAC system that was well-designed and intuitive. A large center console houses the electronic joystick for the transmission, along with a rotary dial for scrolling through the iDrive system.

Frontal passengers are fortunate, as the sport seats not only provide great lateral and lumbar support, but heat as well. Those in the rear are also treated to comfortable seating, however, those over six feet tall may be hampered by a lack of headroom. Cargo capacity in the X4 ranges from 18.5 cubic-feet with all seats in use, to 50.5 cubic-feet with them folded, and is a snap to access, thanks to the electronic rear hatch.

BMW X4

2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Performance

Under the hood is a 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline-six engine that produces 248 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque through an eight-speed automatic transmission. Hard throttle is met with quick and abrupt shifts that are in no way harsh. The transmission can also be shifted manually via the center-mounted joystick or steering wheel-mounted paddles. As the X4 is all-wheel drive, aggressive launches reward the driver with a zero-to-60 mph time of just 6.0 seconds. The power delivery is smooth, and thanks to a very sorted chassis, the X4 exhibits little in the way of front-end push when driven aggressively. BMW also offers four different drive modes (Sport+, Sport, Comfort, Eco Pro) with each catering to the different needs a driver may have. On the road, the X4 30i has more than enough power and it will reach its electronically limited top speed of 130 mph effortlessly.

And while I doubt many owners will venture off-road, BMW has seen fit to include Hill Descent Control for those just in case moments. Keeping the X4 glued to the pavement came by way of 19×7.5-inch alloys that wear a squared 245/50-series setup of Pirelli all-season tires. Not only did they provide excellent grip in both the wet and dry, but emergency handling and hard braking maneuvers were met with nothing but confidence. Lastly, the X4 is also very fun to drive, as its handling manners and overall on-road prowess far exceeds what its shape would dictate. Notably, it also gets respectable mileage, by way of an EPA rated 22 mpg in the city, 29 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg during combined driving.*

BMW X4

2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Safety

Equipped with the latest in safety technology, the 2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i comes with such features as airbags throughout the cabin, xDrive all-wheel drive, anti-lock brakes, adaptive brake lights, electronic stability control, traction control, blind-spot monitoring, active driving assistant including daytime pedestrian protection, and a rearview camera.

Additional safety features can be seen at BMWUSA.com.

BMW X4

2019 BMW X4 xDrive 30i Overall

The BMW X4 xDrive 30i is one of those rare vehicles that will be perfect for owners looking to accomplish a variety of different tasks. By acting as a crossover, a sports car, as well as a family hauler when needed, BMW hopes the X4 will appeal to sport-oriented families whose mission is to have s fun regardless of the weather.

Drop by your local AutoNation-affiliated Audi dealer today to check one out!

*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.

**Vehicle MSRP of $57,895.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.

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