Besides the launch of the F40 BMW M135i xDrive, BMW Malaysia has introduced the entry-level F48 X1 sDrive18i variant in Malaysia, which slots below the existing X1 sDrive20i M Sport. At RM208,368.48 (with SST waived), it’s the most affordable BMW model that’s currently on sale in Malaysia, or a full RM17k cheaper than its more powerful M Sport counterpart. With SST, the CKD SUV would cost RM215,800, so you’re looking at a discount of RM7,431.52.

What you get, or what you don’t get for the money rather, are the M Sport kit and 18-inch wheels fitted on the more expensive sDrive20i model. Instead, it gets the more basic front and rear bumpers with unpainted plastic inserts and body cladding, as well as 17-inch V-spoke style 560 alloys with 225/55 Bridgestone Turanza T001 tyres, satin aluminium roof rails, and a single exhaust exit.

The sDrive18i still gets the same full LED headlights with hexagonal LED corona rings, horizontally mounted LED fog lamps, full LED tail lights with L-shaped internal graphics, and powered tailgate. Colour options are the same as the M Sport variant (Alpine White, Black Sapphire and Mineral Grey), although the sportier Misano Blue is replaced by Mediterranean Blue (as seen here).

Moving inside, the sDrive18i gets basic Dakota leather seats, Sport leather-wrapped three-spoke steering wheel, and piano black inserts. Besides that, the remaining kit list is pretty much on par with the more expensive M Sport variant.

That includes dual-zone automatic climate control, analogue instrument gauges with an integrated 5.7-inch Black Panel display, 8.8-inch touchscreen head unit with BMW Operating System 6.0, 100-watt six-speaker sound system, and fibre optic ambient lighting with six colour options. The rear centre tunnel continues to come with twin USB-C charging ports and air vents.

The biggest change here is found under the bonnet. Powering this compact SUV is the automaker’s B38 1.5 litre three-cylinder engine with a single twin-scroll turbo. It makes 140 PS and 220 Nm of torque, with drive sent to the front wheels through a seven-speed Steptronic dual-clutch transmission. The 0-100 km/h sprint is done in 9.6 seconds, top speed is 201 km/h, and the average fuel consumption is 6.3 litres per 100 km.

For safety, BMW’s entry-level model is now recipient of Driving Assistant, which means it gets front collision warning with brake intervention (AEB), cruise control with braking function, lane departure warning, high-beam assistant, and speed limit info. Also on are electronic differential lock system and performance control. Extras include BMW ConnectedDrive services with Intelligent Emergency Call and Teleservices.

GALLERY: 2020 F48 BMW X1 sDrive18i Malaysian Launch