Following on from reports that BMW is developing a rival to the upcoming Audi Q1 compact crossover, Auto Express has released a plethora of new details about the small BMW off-roader. It will reportedly be dubbed the BMW 1-Series Sport Cross and is apparently known internally as the XCite. The car has apparently been pencilled in for a launch in 2018.

Auto Express indicates that the BMW 1-Series Sport Cross will adopt a more coupe-like profile than the X1 which it will sit below in the marque’s model range. It should also implement a high waistline and when combined with traditional BMW design traits like the kidney front grille and slim LED headlights, it is hoped it will attract new buyers to the brand. In the cabin, the 1-Series Sport Cross is likely to draw inspiration from the ‘i’ division to complement the relatively bold exterior styling.

Underpinning the 1-Series Sport Cross will be the firm’s UKL1 front-wheel drive platform and be offered with a selection of petrol and diesel engines in three-cylinder and four-cylinder guises. While the UKL1 platform is front-wheel drive biased, a variant with all-wheel drive could be offered but a variant from the M Performance isn’t expected.

As for the Audi Q1, it will act as a step-up for Audi A1 owners and is expected to appeal more to male buyers than the A1 of which 70-80 per cent of buyers are female. When the Q1 joins the Q3, Q5 and Q7 SUVs, Audi hopes that its SUV range will account for 50 per cent of its overall sales.

Underpinning the Audi Q1 will be the Volkswagen Group’s MQB platform and it should be similar in size to the Audi A3. Beneath the skin, it will be available with the same range of petrol and diesel engines as the A1 meaning a 1.4-litre turbo four is expected alongside a 1.6-litre diesel. Additionally, a 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder is a possibility.

[Via Auto Express]


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