BMW previewed at the Paris Auto Show the future X1 with the Concept version of the SUV. The concept is a four-wheel drive model and that makes sense because all current BMW SUVs are four-wheel drive only. But now BMW announced that the production X1, set to be revealed in 2010, will be offered in both four-wheel drive and rear-wheel drive configurations.

The decision has been made because the company believes that weight savings and efficiency gains will persuade buyers to accept a rear-drive only version of the X1. The company is expected to offer the rear-drive X1 with four-cylinder 2.0-liter gas and diesel engines.

To differentiate it from the four-wheel drive X1, BMW is planning to introduce a new ‘sDrive’ badge. This will lead to a complicated naming structure, with model names like the BMW X1 18isDrive.

Larger-engined versions of the X1 will have four-wheel drive as standard, and will wear the same xDrive badge as the X5 and X6.


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