When we first saw the BMW X2, we were unimpressed. So, it’s another BMW crossover, we thought. But the more we looked at it and read about it, we decided that the X2 has some serious merit. If the automotive world is going to continue on its route towards a more crossover-oriented future, we’d rather those vehicles be more like the BMW X2 than something boring like the Nissan Rogue.

No offense to Nissan and its top-selling crossover, but the Rogue is a dial tone, whereas the BMW X2 appears to be at least a little lively. That’s what we want from our crossovers, and to illustrate why we think BMW’s latest CUV is pretty good, we decided to highlight five things.

1. It Shares the UKL Platform with some of MINI’s Offerings

2018 BMW X2 rear

Whether you’re a big fan of MINI’s offerings or not, you have to admit they can be a lot of fun. Part of that playfulness on the road comes down to the UKL platform. This platform is also the basis for the BMW 2-Series and X1, which are well-liked. That should mean the X2 will have the chops to back up its eye-catching, racy looks. We don’t expect it to be an all-out riot to drive, but as far as crossovers go, it should be quite fun.

2. It’s BMW’s Smallest Crossover

2018 BMW X2

Don’t let its name fool you. The X2 has a smaller overall size than the X1. Price wise, though it’s a little more expensive, which may be why it has a name that would seem to make sense between the BMW X1 and X3. The model’s small overall size, means it competes in the ever-growing subcompact crossover market, but that also makes us wonder who’s going to pay more for less space?

3. The M Sport X Design Pack Spices Things Up

2018 BMW X2

The BMW X2 already looks like the brand’s most sporty crossover offering, but BMW didn’t stop there. The company decided it would also make available an M Sport X package, which seeks to combine the X SUV characteristics with the company’s M performance cars. The package adds new bumpers, side skirts, 19-inch or 20-inch (if you want to upgrade further) wheels, and grey exterior trim. Inside the car, the model gets new trim exclusive to the package.

4. All-Wheel Drive and Hill-Descent Control are Standard

2018 BMW X2 in the dirt

Although Autoweek notes that the model will likely come in a front-wheel-drive version somewhere down the line, the 2018 BMW X2 comes with all-wheel drive as standard equipment, and hill-descent control. This may provide some mild off-road capability but with the ground clearance not being all that impressive, you’re probably best to keep the X2 on the road. That said, it should be a hoot to drive in the snow thanks in part to its punchy 2.0-liter turbocharged engine making 228 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.

5. It Takes Classic BMW Styling Cues and Modifies Them

2018 BMW X2

BMW has some styling elements that are well-known. The twin-kidney grille, Hofmeister kink, and BMW’s roundel badging are just a few, and most of the hallmark visual cues for the brand are on the X2, but they’re a little different. For instance, the twin-kidney grille is flipped on its head. This takes a distinctive icon but gives it a new, fresh look. The roundel badging on the C-pillar harkens back to classic BMW models like the E9 coupe, a feature that hasn’t been seen in many years. The more we look at the X2, the more we see how it fits into the BMW family. It will be interesting to see how BMW enthusiasts take to the model.

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