BMW will unveil its latest “Sports Activity Coupe," the X4 crossover, in concept form at an upcoming auto show by mid-2013.
The Bavarian automaker invented the notion of a Sports Activity Coupe a few years back with the X6, essentially an X5 with more aggressive styling, a sloping roofline and significantly decreased cabin space. Look for the X4 to follow the same formula, only with the smaller X3 as its basis.
In Europe, the X4 will get a range of gas and diesel engines of the four- and six-cylinder varieties, while gearbox choices will include a traditional six-speed manual, a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and a conventional eight-speed automatic. Because they aren't offered in the U.S.-market X3, it’s unlikely (though still possible) that the X4 will be offered stateside with a manual transmission or diesel engine. Do, however, expect a range-topping X4 M with a turbocharged inline-six similar to that of the upcoming M3.
The X4 will carry a price premium over its more utilitarian X3 sibling; whereas the X3 starts at $39,395, an Autoweek report suggests that the X4 will carry a base price of $42,000.
Last year, BMW CEO Norbert Reithofer revealed that the X4 will reach production in 2014. Volume limitations had originally led BMW to shelve the project, but the plans to increase capacity at the automaker's plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina freed up enough space for the X4 to become a reality.