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The BMW X4 is one of the latest compact luxury crossover SUVs from the German automaker, first introduced at the 2014 New York International Auto Show. BMW markets the X4 as a 'Sports Activity Coupe', combining attributes of an SUV with the sloping rear roofline associated with a coupe. This makes the X4 a high-riding sporty premium SUV, offering fantastic agility and four-wheel drive across the range. The X4 sits above the X3 in BMW's model line-up, with which it shares a platform, and it represents a desirable alternative to well-established models like the Porsche Macan and Land Rover Evoque.
From launch there are three engines available in the X4, and given that they share a platform it is unsurprising to learn that these are directly borrowed from the smaller X3. The range kicks off with the entry-level 190bhp 2.0-litre 20d unit, followed by the 30d and 35d. These latter two engines make use of the same 3.0-litre straight-six engine but offer different power outputs of 258bhp and 313bhp respectively. Economy and emissions figures are strong across the board so the X4 will be surprisingly frugal to run.
The entry-level engine comes mated to a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, while the high powered units are available with fantastically smooth eight-speed automatic transmission. All models receive BMW's xDrive all-wheel drive system, which generates brilliant levels of grip and inspires great confidence particularly on winding roads.
BMW are not shy when it comes to fitting their vehicles with the latest equipment, and the X4 is no exception. The trim levels on offer comprise SE, xLine and M Sport, with even the most basic models lavishly equipped with heated leather seats, 18-inch alloys, automatic air-conditioning, DAB radio, parking sensors, cruise control and sat-nav fitted as standard. Also included is a wide array of safety features, and when eventually crash tested by Euro NCAP the X4 is expected to receive a maximum five-star rating.
The BMW X4 is fantastically equipped, good to drive and has a great range of powerful diesel engines under the bonnet. There is a lot of competition within the premium SUV class, but the X4 makes a convincing case and stands out as an accomplished all-round package.
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