BMW SUVs 2020: full guide and latest deals

From the small X1 to the gargantuan X7, there's probably a BMW SUV for you in its seven-strong SUV line-up. See our guide to every one

BuyaCar team
Jul 29, 2020

Raised high off the ground, with the ability to go off road and a big, practical interior, sport utility vehicles (SUVs) don't follow the recipe of the traditional low and nimble BMW but the company’s offerings in this sector are hugely popular.

Its SUVs tend to be a bit sportier than the competition, with responsive steering and nimble cornering that you might not expect from a tall and hefty vehicle. That's particularly the case with the even-numbered cars - the X2, X4 and X6 - which attempt to blend the practicality of a traditional SUV with the sportier feel of BMW's saloons such as the 3 Series and 5 Series.

At the top of the range sits the new X7, a truly enormous SUV that’s bigger even than a Range Rover and has seven genuinely comfortably seats as standard. With its arrival there's now an SUV for every type of customer - in BMW's eyes. Read on to decide for yourself.



Best BMW SUV for low running costs

Less good for large families

Latest BMW X1 deals from £9,840
Finance from £196 per month

The X1, whose rivals include the Audi Q3 and Mercedes GLA, is the baby in BMW’s SUV line-up, designed to look like a shrunken version of the larger X3 and X5 cars. Inside is the same story: its dashboard layout and large screen, controlled by a rotary dial, will be familiar to any driver of a modern BMW.

The interior is surprisingly roomy and there's a generous amount of boot space. From behind the wheel, the X1 is responsive and lively. It has some efficient engines too, particularly the xDrive 20d diesel models, which are powerful too. Any fuel savings pale into insignificance against its price, which starts at more than £27,500 when new or £21,000 for a two-year-old model: you could have a similarly-sized Nissan Qashqai for £10,000 less.



Best BMW SUV for compact sportiness

Less good for value for money

Latest BMW X2 deals from £21,299
Finance from £271 per month

It's smaller than the BMW X1 but costs more, as BMW expects X2 buyers to pay more for its sportier design and driving feel.

And that's really it for the differences between the two cars. The curvier design of the X2 means that it has slightly less boot space (but there's still room for plenty of luggage) and less rear headroom. On the road, it's a little nimbler in corners than the X1, changing direction more sharply without much leaning, while remaining comfortable on bumpy roads.


Best BMW SUV for all-round family car excellence

Less good for excitement

Latest BMW X3 deals from £14,699
Finance from £226 per month

The new BMW X3, which went on sale earlier this year, is possibly the most rounded BMW SUV of them all. Not as heavy and bulky as the larger X5, nor as compact as the smaller X1, it's comfortable to drive in town but large enough to carry a family and their luggage for an extended break.

A rival to the Audi Q5, Volvo XC60 and Mercedes GLC, the BMW X3 virtually matches them on comfort, but feels nimbler - like a much smaller car - which gives you more confidence behind the wheel. All versions have four-wheel drive. The spacious interior looks and feels well-made and finished, while the boot is bigger than a 3 Series saloon’s. The previous car was excellent too, if you're looking at used models.



Best BMW SUV for coupe fans

Less good for looking backwards

Latest BMW X4 deals from £16,500
Finance from £249 per month

The BMW X4 can't hide its position as a car of two halves. From the top, the steeply angled windscreen runs into the roof, which curves to the back, creating the same outline as a sporty coupe. Underneath, though, the deep windows and doors give it the height of an SUV.

The X4 uses the same parts as the X3 but is engineered to feel sportier, with increased agility through corners and a powerful range of engines to choose from. It remains comfortable, if not quite as smooth over bumps as the X3.

The roofline reduces headroom in the back but there’s no shortage of legroom. The front has lots of both. The boot is almost as big as the X3’s but the raked rear end means bulkier items won’t fit. The shallow rear window also means rearward visibility isn't as good as the X3’s.

As the X4 is relatively new, most of the used cars available are from the previous generation, which has a similar design and driving experience.



Best BMW SUV for comfort

Less good for off-roading

Latest BMW X5 deals from £18,698
Finance from £359 per month

Despite the large size of the BMW X5, its surprisingly car-like to drive, making it one of the sportiest SUVs of its size available.

This is helped by standard air suspension on all but the range-topping M50d, which keeps the car composed over uneven roads and reduces leaning in corners. Because the suspension constantly adapts to conditions, it also soaks up bumps effectively, for a smooth ride.

It all makes the X5 one of the most comfortable cars to ride in for passengers. The wide seats and generous legroom and headroom means that there's plenty of space to stretch out in the front and back. As long as you're not in the optional third row of seats, that is: these take up most of the boot space unless folded flat, and are only really spacious enough for children.

Most used BMW X5s are previous-generation cars, which offer a similar level of comfort and space but lack the hi-tech interior of the latest version, which went on sale in 2018. The newer car has two 12.3in screens to match the technology available in the alternative Audi Q7 and Mercedes GLE. Partial self-driving technology allows the car to steer itself in its lane and to switch lanes when you click the indicator stalk.



Best BMW SUV for performance

Less good for ;carrying luggage

BMW X6 front

Latest BMW X6 deals from £17,000
Finance from £360 per month

The X6 is the third SUV-coupe in BMW’s model line-up. It uses the mechanical parts from the previous-generation X5 but tops them with that sloping roof.

As with the X4, this reduces the amount of headroom in the rear, cuts into boot space and limits rear visibility. The big X6 is surprisingly good to drive, though: the sportiest models are extremely quick, and the car feels even more agile than the X5, with responsive steering that gives you a good feel of how much the wheels are turning. This helps you zip along narrow roads with increased accuracy. With this ability comes a steep price, though.


Best BMW SUV for making an entrance

Less good for tight parking spaces

Latest BMW X1 deals from £58,380
Finance from £797 per month

The BMW X7 has space for seven adults to sit in comfort, a luxurious interior and a smooth ride. It's a taller version of the 7 Series luxury saloon car but with considerably more interior space and visual presence, right down to its 21-inch alloy wheels.

It’s larger than a Range Rover, and one of the few SUVs that promises to seat seven adults in genuine comfort. If you don't need seven seats, you can order your X7 with six for that limousine feel.

The interior is much the same as the new X5’s so there are two 12.3-inch displays in addition to wood trims and a fancy gear selector. But where the X7 really stands out is in its enormous grille that lets everyone know BMW’s biggest SUV has arrived.

BMW SUVs coming soon


On sale 2020

BMW will join other upmarket manufacturers in launching an electric SUV next year. The iX3 will offer an alternative to the Jaguar I-Pace, Audi e-tron and Mercedes EQC.

The car will share many of its parts with the existing BMW X3, so it may benefit from that car's all-round strengths, but it's not known how many compromises have had to be made in a car designed for a conventional engine as well as battery power. its rivals have been designed as electric vehicles from the ground up.

A range of around 250 miles is promised, and performance is likely to be brisk. The design will be similar to the iX3 concept car shown above.


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