BMW isn't one to shy away from filling a market sector - even if there wasn't much of a gap to fill in the first place. You only need to look at the X6 coupe-SUV, the 4-Series Gran Tourer four-door coupe-hatchback or the 2-Series Gran Tourer 225xe Mini-based hybrid MPV for that. Now, though, the brand has revealed its latest niche-busting vehicle - the X2.
Slotting between the X1 and X3 SUVs, the X2 aims to be a more stylish option with youthful appeal - pitched to compete with the Audi Q2, Volvo XC40 and Jaguar E-Pace. It shares its wheelbase with the X1, but it's two centimetres shorter and seven centimetres lower, making it a far more sleek and slinky offering.
Unlike lots of cars, the X2 made its way from motor show concept to real-life vehicle virtually unchanged. It features a slim glasshouse, a newly shaped kidney grille and BMW badges on the C-pillar - a hark back to the M1 supercar.
The X2 is offered in SE, Sport, M Sport and M Sport X trims, but from launch there will only be a single engine choice - a 2.0-litre diesel with 188bhp and 400Nm of torque, badged 20d. It's capable of 0-60mph in 7.5 seconds, while returning an official combined fuel economy figure of 61.4mpg - while mated to four-wheel drive.
Later in the year, more engines will be added - a lower-powered diesel with either front- or four-wheel drive, or a front-wheel drive petrol model. Sharing the UKL1 platform with the BMW X1 and the Mini Countryman means the X2 will be limited to four-cylinder engines, but there's the possibility of a hybrid powertrain in future.
Inside, it's business as usual for BMW. There's the familiar iDrive infotainment system, paired as standard to a 6.5-inch display which can be upgraded to an 8.8-inch unit for an additional cost. The driver-focused cabin is broadly similar to that of the X1, and will offer a heads-up display and WiFi hotspot. However, disappointingly for a car aimed at young and funky buyers, Apple CarPlay isn't standard and Android Auto isn't even available as an option.
The X2 is priced from ?33,980 at launch for the xDrive20d model.