The Chinese love to be chauffeured about and the huge influx of odd “long-wheelbase” versions of cars wholly speaks for this trend, and so does this latest long-wheelbase BMW X1, designed for China only.
Thankfully, unlike BMW’s recent stunt with commemorating their centennial with what is quite possibly one of the longest and most ridiculous names for a gussied-up 7-Series, BMW simply just called this X1, the “X1 Long Wheelbase,” instead of the “BMW X1 Happy 100th Birthday To Us So Here’s A Long Wheelbase Version.”
So, how much does it grow by?
All the extra length goes at the wheelbase, where rear passengers benefit from over a three-inch increase. It’s also almost an inch wider and one and a half inches taller. So basically, it’s almost an X3…Talk about product overlap.
This however translates into a very cavernous interior, with anywhere from two to seven extra inches in knee space, depending on how the front seats are arranged. The X1 Long Wheelbase also adds a little bit extra practicality with some extra trunk space.
The X1 Long Wheelbase, thankfully, is not destined for any market other than China’s where it will be built at the newly launched BMW Brilliance Tiexi plant in Shenyang. Customers will be able to choose from a turbo three-banger with 136hp, a four with 192hp, and the top-spec model being a turbo four with 231hp. All are mated to an eight-speed ZF-sourced Steptronic transmission while the three-cylinder model gets a six-speed auto.
– By: Chris Chin