One of the company’s busiest years in recent history, 2022 will usher in a third-generation BMW X1. The firm’s smallest crossover might not be so small anymore based on a report from Auto Bild. According to the German magazine, the U11 will bring a significant increase in length to 4.6 meters (181.1 inches).

If their sources are correct, it would make the new BMW X1 nearly 16 centimeters (6.3 inches) longer than the outgoing model. At the same time, it would be even longer than the elongated X1 Li built and sold in China. The growth spurt isn’t all too surprising since next-gen cars are typically larger than their predecessors. However, the jump in size is substantial and would make the entry-level crossover closer in length to the 4.7-meter X3.

We shouldn’t be too surprised if Auto Bild’s report is accurate considering a BMW X1 electric version has been confirmed. Batteries take up space, thus necessitating a longer wheelbase, so believe much of the stretch will be between the axles. Our sources say the iX1 will come with a dual-motor setup, which would require more room to fit all the hardware.

Image by @wilcoblok on Instagram

With the BMW X1 / iX1 mechanically twinned with the next-generation MINI Countryman, the latter should also be much bigger. It too will get an EV variant and both will ride on the FAAR platform providing access to gasoline and diesel engines joined by a plug-in hybrid powertrain. Expect 38-kWh and 74-kWh batteries with a range of up to 250 miles (400 kilometers) in the WLTP cycle.

There could be iX1 20 and iX1 30 trim levels, with the former likely powered by a front electric motor. Rumors say the base model will make do with 180 hp while the more potent dual-motor could pack 250 hp. Of course, the iX1 with a pair of electric motors will have xDrive. The iX1 will be fashionably late as Mercedes has been selling the EQA for a while, together with the boxy EQB.

[Source: Auto Bild] [Images: @Wilcoblok on Instagram]