Sprightly 2018 BMW X2 is a hatch masquerading as a crossover

BMW's even-numbered crossovers -- X4 and X6 -- are basically swoopy-roof versions of the odd-numbered models, and for the longest time, their proportions have always looked slightly off to me. But the latest addition to this mix, the 2018 X2, solves that by looking less like a crossover and more like a proper hatchback.

The 2018 BMW X2 is the latest crossover to join BMW's fold, and its proportions are just right. It sports the same wheelbase as the also-small X1, but the body is 3.2 inches shorter and 2.8 inches lower, giving it a properly sleek look that's closer to car than crossover. The off-color lower body cladding suggests a degree of ruggedness, yet there isn't a whole lot of space between the car's wheels and the fenders surrounding them.

Inside, it's all traditional BMW. There's a gauge screen in front of the driver that appears to be completely empty when the car's off, a "floating" type infotainment screen on the dashboard and actual physical switchgear for the climate controls and radio. The rear seats have a 40/20/40 split, and anywhere between one and all three sections can lower, increasing cargo capacity.

A 6.5-inch infotainment screen is standard, with the option to upgrade to touch-capable screens in 6.5-inch or 8.8-inch sizes. A head-up display is optional, as well.

At launch, just one engine will be available -- a 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 putting out 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard, as is all-wheel drive. It'll hit 60 mph in 6.3 seconds.

If you want an extra dose of sport, there's an optional M Sport X package. It adds a sport setting for the transmission, which speeds up both upshifts and downshifts, and it adds paddle shifters to the steering wheel. You'll also get larger wheels, unique aluminum interior trim and optional perforated Dakota leather.

As with other modern BMWs, it's loaded with the latest in connected-car tech. BMW Connected+ offers first- and last-mile navigation when you aren't in the car, integrating your smartphone or wearable device into BMW's little ecosystem. It can also share ETAs with contacts, and occupants can stay connected on the road with a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot. Apple CarPlay is optional, as well.

In terms of safety technology, optional packages can kit the X2 out with lane departure warning, automatic high beams, automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning. The adaptive cruise control works in stop-and-go conditions, and if you tick the right options box, it can also parallel park without any driver input.

The 2018 BMW X2 goes on sale this spring; pricing will be announced closer to that time.

Discuss 2018 BMW X2