BMW X1 ends up on Jeremy Clarkson’s ‘Stinker’ List

BMW X1, News | August 25th, 2016 by 12
2016 BMW X1 South Africa 166 750x500

A little while back, famous ex-Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson created a list of 10 “Star Cars“. These were the best cars on sale if …

A little while back, famous ex-Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson created a list of 10 “Star Cars“. These were the best cars on sale if you asked him and this list featured the excellent BMW M2. He loves the M2 and feels that it brings the famous M Divison back to its roots. However, he’s now come out with a “Stinker” list of all the cars on sale that he doesn’t like at all. On this list is the new, second-generation BMW X1.

Clarkson first talks about the old car, which he didn’t like very much. He claims how it was ugly, rode poorly and wasn’t very practical. However, he claims this new variant is worse. Much worse.

With the new BMW X1 being built on the same UKL platform as modern MINIs, and using a transverse-mounted engine driving the front wheels, Clarkson claims that it no longer feels like a BMW. Which is something that upsets Clarkson, because he feels that BMW is one of the only brands left that makes cars that feel German. Most other companies make cars that feel like they’re built all over the place, rather than their home countries. Mostly because they are. But he says BMWs still feel like German BMWs. Except for the X1.

2016 BMW X1 South Africa 200 750x500

He also has some beef with the way it actually drives and doesn’t feel like it’s a proper crossover, specifically how it can’t handle off-road. “My test car was fitted with four-wheel drive, so you might think it’d have been able to deal with a bit of muddy ground. Nope. On a short piece of level grass it was skidding about all over the place.” Now, Clarkson has been known to use hyperbole when trying to prove a point and I think that’s what he’s doing here. Unless UK cars get a different sort of xDrive, I can personally say that the X1 can handle more than people would think because I gave that little thing hell on its press launch in Mexico on terrain that would make other crossovers cry.

He also disliked the 2.0 liter diesel engine on the X1 xDrive25d. “The range-topping TwinPower 2-litre diesel that I drove didn’t feel speedy. In fact it left the line about as enthusiastically as its designer got out of bed in the morning. With a plaintive cry of: ‘Must I?'”

However, he does go on to say that it isn’t actually a bad car. But, in Clarkson’s eyes, it’s such a disappointment because he knows what BMW is capable of. So for that reason, it goes on his ‘Stinker’ list.

[Source: SundayTimes]

12 responses to “BMW X1 ends up on Jeremy Clarkson’s ‘Stinker’ List”

  1. CDspeed says:

    Design wise I think the new X1 looks great, but if it’s as numb in the steering as the 2016 X3 I drove as a loaner last month, I could understand the lack of a real BMW driving experience.

    • Max says:

      Come on, almost no one who buys an X1 will ever bring this car to its limits (dont think 90% of 2er coupe buyers will do that either).
      I dont know why “enthusiasts” still dont understand, that not every BMW is made for them. Its a family/grandma car, with best driving experience in class and thats all what matters here. And its look imo is much nicer than the old one! Sales numbers are proving that as well!

      • Senne says:

        I actually agree with you. But BMW used to be an enthusiast brand. They still make some cars especially because enthusiasts asked for it (M2), but even they have some compromises… though I understand why BMW does all this. After all it’s a car brand, and thus profit and sale numbers are the most important after all. But also image! So that’s why it’s very important that they keep as many cars as possible RWD (I’m thinking of the future 1 Series Hatch – it may become 2 Series – and definitely 2 Series Coupe/ Convertible/ Gran Coupe), because otherwise it could harm BMW’s sporty image. Many people don’t even know BMW’s are RWD, so just keep it that way and please all enthusiasts around the world!

        • Max says:

          I have no worries that BMW knows about its history and image and will keep that for as long as possible ;) I mean they can even make a BMW i brand which doesnt hurt their image! That sporty brand is also substainable and future orientated so why not do FWD? In some segments practicability is more valueable than pure driving pleasure…
          I think the goal is always: sportiest in class! And even a FWD can be sporty and fun, MINI proves that every day! Also Golf GTI, Focus RS etc…

          And looking at the rumors about the next 3er, everything looks great!

          Ok, 1/2er hatch/GC with FWD would be bad, but also, in this class (A3 Sedan, CLA) it looks like people rly dont care and why would u sell 10.000 cars to enthuasiasts if you can sell 100.000 cars to everyone. And after the success of the M2 I have no doubt that the next gen will stay RWD, it just has to (wasnt there an interview with the development guy?).

      • vfr says:

        It does 0-60 in 6.3 secs and handles way better if you upgrade the tires, see my post above. It’s definitely not a granny car, there are plenty of others around for that.

        • Max says:

          I know that it isnt a granny car in general, but most buyers in this class are, at least its my impression :D
          And yes, runflats and also AS are sh*t anyway, but also made for these folks, which is ok. I believe you can have the M Sport version without them, right?

      • CDspeed says:

        I wasn’t referring to high performance driving at all, just driving on a regular basis I’ve come to expect excellent feedback through the steering wheel thanks to BMW. But their newer steering systems are so numb I feel like I have to put in extra effort just to go in a straight line, let alone take a corner with confidence. A true BMW steering feel talks to you even in ordinary traffic.

        • darex says:

          As hard as it might be to believe, I find the F56 MINI Cooper to have the most direct and communicative steering of any car I’ve driven in recent memory. I’d say BMW nailed it on the F56, and hopefully the X1, being based on the same architecture (albeit a lot heavier) is at least 75% as well implemented. My point: BMW can make a FWD with fantastically communicative steering, and I’m sure the X1’s can be improved, if it truly is THAT bad.

  2. vfr says:

    My gf just picked one up, first thing I did was replace the runflats with Michelin AS3+ tires, totally transformed the handling and steering feel! The other thing is, it could have had sport buckets without have to get the expensive M sport package as I don’t care for the stock seats.

  3. roadbum40 says:

    Love my X1. Run-flat delete because I wanted a spare tire. Also love my modded 235i. Totally different use-cases. I just can’t get the entire family in the 2-series. Unless I start stacking them. :) Different cars for different lifestyles. I didn’t get the X1 thinking I would take it to the track. And I didn’t get the 2 thinking ‘what a great family car.’

    • egk says:

      All the BMW snobs crying it’s front drive based and doesn’t have 50/50 weight dist blah blah, blah. Do you think the majority of X1 drivers will even notice when driving to the local mall? No. Also the haters who say they don’t like the new X1 because it’s not based off the F30 chassis, who cares, this platform allows more interior room and noticeable improvement over last gen x1. The F48 also looks like a smaller version of the current X5 which is a good thing, the previous generation X1 looked like a high top sneaker, not a good thing. BMW knows what they’re doing. All the haters will get used to it just like when they cried about forced induction ///M cars.

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