Just a year and a half since its unveiling, the BMW X1 xDrive28i has had an engine overhaul. The subcompact SUV has the honors of being the debut vehicle for BMW’s new N20B20, which finally brings BMW’s TwinPower Turbo technology to its 4-cylinder engine.

The 6-cylinder X1 xDrive28i previously featured the company’s 3.0 litre 6-cylinder normally aspirated engine, making 258 horsepower at 6,600rpm and 310Nm of torque from 2,600rpm to 3,000rpm, with a fuel consumption of 9.4 litre per 100km.

Thanks to the downsized forced induction 2.0 litre N20B20 4-cylinder engine, the new X1 xDrive28i consumes just 7.9 litres per 100km.

Peak power is 245 horsepower at 5,000rpm and 350Nm of torque from as low as 1,250rpm – as you can see, the stats are better in every way! 0 to 100km/h is achieved in 6.1 seconds with the manual and 6.5 seconds with the auto, an improvement of 0.7 seconds and 0.3 seconds respectively.

The manual transmission remains the 6-speeder found in the X1 before this, but the new N20 turbocharged engine is mated with an 8-speed transmission instead of the outgoing 6-speeder – this makes the new X1 xDrive28i the first X1 equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission. I think it’s just a matter of time before the rest of the models get updated with an 8-speeder.

You can probably expect the N20B20 to find its way into the 1-Series and the 3-Series as well as perhaps the X3, but I’m not quite sure about the 5-Series, although on paper the engine would be more than capable! I’m also very curious on how this new engine sounds like – can it match up with the sweet song of an inline-6?

Look after the jump for a huge hi-res gallery of the X1.

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