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Old 07-11-2012, 05:03 PM
Teleskier Teleskier is offline
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Location: New England
Join Date: Jun 2012
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Mein Auto: E84, VW TDI, E36
X1 Pre-Order Cold Feet – too many questions – #1) too small?

Stupid sales manager. He could have made a quick keen profit on a fully-loaded and most-highly-incentivized-options N20 X1 in less than 60 seconds of ‘paperwork’ and have locked me in to ED. I was excited, and was ready to pull the ED pre-order trigger. Instead he played the ‘hot car’ ED-at-almost-US-MSRP price gouging route. And now I had time to think.

There are too many open questions without seeing and driving this car. This “dose of reality” feeling was further driven home by this picture a few posts back:

Holy crap – the alcohol has worn off and suddenly the person at the bar doesn’t look so hot anymore. Here from this realistic person-height photo, it looks just like a lowly and low station wagon – not an SUV at all.

It looks just like an unsexy staid Audi A3!! Yikes! How did that happen? A four door euro-sized station wagon that your Italian grandpa drives.

I _thought_ I had done my homework. I have a HUGE gallery of every X1 picture and video that exists. But only just now, I noticed how all of the BMW promo pics – ALL - show the car from a low below-human-height camera angle. This makes the car look much bigger and grander and SUV-like than it perhaps really is. Are all those people standing around it (including the photographer’s angle) really equally that tall, or is the car just really that short? It’s much more station wagon looking than SUV looking. What will it look like in real life, as you are looking down upon it (like a station wagon) in the parking lot surrounded by Escalades??

I also now notice how the BMW video commercials often do a clever little fast-forward speed-up move whenever the car is shown from this rear angle to obfuscate it. Not its prettiest side.

I need to see this car in person - and in American settings - before I can gamble on this.

My X1 size questions:
• Will it look Honda-Fit small next to American SUVs in the parking lot?
• Will its bad rear angles look ugly in person?
• Will American-sized men (who traditionally don’t sit with their legs squeezed tightly together like many in Europe) feel cramped in the very narrow leg cockpit (to make room for large cupholders on the middle deck)?
• In many pictures, the stock xline X1 looks bigger and sportier and higher with its new 2013 styling highlights than the M-Sport with its pre-2013 uniform unicolor aero package. Will the stock X1 counter-intuitively look better than the M-Sport will in real life?
• Is it small enough where it will drive like a fun fast GTI pocket rocket, or sit high enough that you feel closer to a sluggish tippy SUV like the Q5?
• Will it feel like a cheapest-end kids-first-car GTI, or look like an aging A3 station wagon, or look closer to the prior-generation sporty-but-still-serious looking X3?

The jury is still out. I need to see and drive it in person.

I don’t think it is as much of a sure thing that this car will be the run-away hit in the US that this one dealer thinks it will. I bet many in the US will find it:
• Too VW small
• Too small for taking rear seat adult passengers or more than two kids, never mind the multiple dogs
• Too low to see over traffic
• Too low for nosy looks into other cars
• Too low for real off-road
• The stiff rear hatch too difficult to close for many housewives or older folks
• Rear cargo area height will be too low for those who don’t want to bend down that much when putting groceries or heavy objects in back
• “It’s only a ONE series – the lowest and cheapest BMW” stigma will prevent it being bought for any status symbol.
• VW TDI will beat it for those concerned with good mileage but who still want some driving fun (vs Prius) – better mileage at much lesser cost (esp. if X1 looks VW small and looks of-the-VW-category).

I guess I’ll only know when I see it and drive it in person… this sales manager missed the quick easy ED pre-order sale… but better for me that he did.

Too many questions, too much risk, for the blind faith that it took (never mind the galling price gouging).

I have a feeling that I could either love it or hate it in person, and that a half a centimeter here or there could visually sway it either way.

What pictures convinced you that the X1 looks more like a sporty-active SUV than a staid old-school station wagon?
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