BMW plans more X1 variants, including a plug-in hybrid and M with 300-plus horsepower

BMW-X1_2016_front angle

BMW has sold more than a fair share of its X1 crossovers in the U.S. and now the Bavarian automaker looks to be planning new variants to attract buyers seeking either efficiency or performance.

Motoring is reporting that BMW admitted projections for both a plug-in hybrid and full-on X1 M, both based on the upcoming second generation X1.

As for the hybrid, components for the setup would come from the 2 Series Active Tourer including its 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder gas engine and an electric motor. In the 2 Series Active Tourer, the combined effect is 221 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque. The X1 hybrid would join the X5 xDrive40e as BMW’s crossover and SUV hybrid offerings. At this point, BMW is waiting to see how the hybrid utility vehicle market evolves before pulling the trigger on the X1 hybrid.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, BMW sources have acknowledged that an M version of the X1 would fit well with the brand’s present lineup. Power would be far greater than the current range-topping xDrive25i, which uses a 2.0-liter gas engine that develops 228 HP and 258 pound-feet of torque. That setup gets the vehicle to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds and on to a 146 mph top speed.

The X1 M should make somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 HP and would add the usual M bits like a more rigid body, quad exhaust system, stronger brakes, and shoutier body work. In the U.S. at least, the performance-oriented X1 wouldn’t have much competition, considering the RS Q3 is a European-only affair, and neither the Lexus NX nor Volkswagen Tiguan approach its performance territory.

Only the Mercedes GLA45 AMG would stand in the X1 M’s way, but 375 horsepower from its turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder is one heck of an obstacle.

If either vehicle is approved for production, they won’t go on sale until sometime in 2017.