Experienced by Kyle Ayoung
It was a mild fall afternoon when I was introduced to my new friend. She was a Melbourne Red metallic 2015 BMW X4 xDrive35i with Ivory White Nevada Leather seats and equipped with the M Sport package. Similar to its X6 brother, the X4 has a very striking and inviting appearance, especially as it relates to the coupe-like roofline. The sleek aggressive styling, wide stance and large iconic BMW kidney grille are very appealing. But you may still question if it’s more SUV or station wagon? Is it a large hatchback or just another sporty utility? Truth is, the X4 is the perfect blend of all of the above and proved to be a perfect match for my weekly needs, which are inclusive of toting two kids and a wife around town.
BMW’s X4 Sports Activity Coupe (SAC) is available with two TwinPower Turbo engines. The xDrive28i with the 2-liter 4-cylinder produces 240-horsepower and scoots 0 to 60 mph in 6 seconds flat. My model, the xDrive35i is equipped with a 3-liter in-line 6-cylinder and kicks out an impressive 300-horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque between 1,200–5,000 rpm. The SAC also accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 5.2 seconds. Yes, BMW has had much success with the in-line six engines and for the extra $3,000 my choice would be the xDrive35i. Both power-plants utilize BMW’s 8-speed quick Steptronic sport automatic transmission with adjustable settings for Sport +, Sport, Comfort and ECO driving modes to give the driver the ability to adjust vehicle performance to their current mood. Steering wheel paddle shifters are my favorite and put the BMW’s power points in your control. As well, with a combined city/hwy 22 mpg, the X4 is easy on fuel budgets. xDrive all-wheel-drive kept all 300 horses grounded and allows this SAC to handle inclement weather well while tackling the occasional weekend adventure with aplomb.
For an aggressive demeanor add M Sport to your X4 which blesses it with the M Aerodynamics package, sportier suspension characteristics, 19” or 20” M alloy rims, brushed aluminum trim, sport seats, the M steering wheel and much more. The X4’s interior is well put together with premium materials that BMW enthusiasts and owners have come to expect. Both rear seats fold down conveniently to open up the rear cargo space which I took advantage of for my cycling gear, groceries and small furniture items since I had to help mother move a few things that weekend. Of course the X4 is fully laced with the latest safety and comfort technology. The list includes Pedestrian and Collision Warning with City Braking and Lane Departure Warning, which work in tandem with Active Driving Assistant + Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go. And, BMW offers its version of self-parking — Parking Assistant — which will guide the X4 into a parallel parking space with minimal interaction from the driver.
All this aforementioned technology and performance is at the driver’s fingertips due to one of the most comprehensive interfaces in the industry. BMW’s iDrive is the pinnacle of centralized driver control systems and follows a very logical order. Apps and instructions are simple to find and moving from navigation to climate control and back to satellite radio is effortless. iDrive also has a dual screen allowing the driver to view their position on a constant map with GPS points of interest and traffic conditions while still using the other half of the screen to manage other views like radio settings.
The X4 offers its owners the perfect blend of performance and technology in a small package. It’s fun to drive for younger audiences and functional enough for urban entrepreneurs or business professionals. My experience with the X4 reminded me of why BMW is so impressive. At $57,450, our loaded 2015 BMW X4 xDrive35i w/M-Sport package is making all the right moves.