The Great SUV Hunt

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  • #143205 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    Today is the first day that we can order our next Motability car to replace our VW Tiguan 2.0TDi 190PS 4Motion DSG SEL. As the dealerships remain closed, we are holding off until Q2 as there’s no way I would order a car without having had a decent test drive. This is made easier by the fact that there’s nothing available currently that we have our heart set on. My wife is a full time wheelchair user and prefers SUV’s as she finds it easier to get in and out of them. I have occasional back and sciatica issues so the higher driving position is handy for me too. The boot needs to be big enough to accommodate the wheelchair but ideally some luggage as well. We have always had 4WD SUV’s but now that we are both retired (so can stay at home if it’s dodgy weather) that’s no longer essential, but is still preferred. My wife is keen that we move away from diesel. An EV is impractical for us as although it would be fine for 95% of our journeys and we have a large garage to charge a car in, we couldn’t be doing with range anxiety on longer journeys and holidays. On that basis, a PHEV could be a good option, or a petrol car.

    As I like a checklist (😂) I have made a list of all the things that we consider to be essential (Sat Nav, Cruise Control, Front & Rear Parking Sensors, Heated Front Seats, LED Headlights, Electric Tailgate, rain sensing wipers & auto headlights, climate control) and the things that we would ideally like (Leather, Privacy Glass, Rear View Camera, Premium Sound System, Adaptive Cruise Control, Adaptive Headlights, Auto High Beam, Keyless Entry, Digital Dash). I have shortlisted cars that we like the look of against this list. All the cars have pros and cons. The 5 cars on the shortlist (prior to any changes in Q2) are as follows;

    VW Tiguan Elegance – Positives are that it has virtually everything as standard and all we would add is the Harman Kardon sound system and (in order to get a flush boot floor) a spare wheel. Negatives are that the only petrol is a 1.5 litre 2WD, leather is a ridiculous £1500 extra which we couldn’t justify and I fancy a change as we have had several Tiguans. If the 2.0TSi 4WD comes on the scheme it will be a very hard car to ignore though.

    Ford Kuga ST-Line X Edition PHEV – Positives are that it’s well equipped and we would add the Technology Pack (adaptive headlights & Head Up Display) plus the Driver Assistance Pack, it would be cheap to run and we could do most of our journeys on electric power, but have no range anxiety issues. Negatives are that it’s 2WD, only half leather, the interior looks a bit low rent compared to the other cars on the shortlist and I’m a bit wary of CVT transmissions. However, in a group test against the Volvo XC40 T5 Recharge and Pug 3008 PHEV by Car Magazine, they rated the Kuga as the best of the three.

    Volvo XC40 T5 Recharge Inscription Pro. Positives are similar to the Kuga, but it’s a premium car and the interior looks far better. Cons are that Adaptive Cruise is massively expensive (part of a pack), you can’t get adaptive headlights even as an option, fuel economy is far worse than the Kuga PHEV and several members of this forum have reported issues with the seats on the model that we would look at.

    Audi Q3 S-Line. Positives are that it’s a premium brand and the Audi Multimedia system is excellent. Negatives are that it’s a 1.5 engine, a lot of the things that we want are either very expensive options or, in the case of adaptive headlights and keyless entry, not even available, which seems very odd. It also looks a bit dinky compared to some of the others.

    BMW X1 20i 4WD X-Line. Positives are that I really like BMW’s from a driving, refinement and performance v economy perspective. It’s also 4WD, powerful and has first class multimedia. Negatives are that it’s a bargain basement BMW compared to the models further up the range (which shows in interior quality), it’s effectively a run-out model as an all new version is due next year, a lot of the kit that we want is only in expensive option packs, not all of which I could justify.

    Keen to hear views from those who have these cars, especially on the aspects that I consider to be negatives (as you might be able to reassure me) and I shall update as things progress, in particular with the inevitable changes in Q2 and as a result of checking the cars out in the flesh.

Viewing 25 replies - 26 through 50 (of 99 total)
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  • #143382 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    I’m due to change in April but I’ve decided to keep my BMW X1 2.0d Xdrive if motability will allow me to extend. The Beemer has everything I need, it’s fast enough when I need it, not that I need it much now, the auto box is the best I’ve ever used and it holds the road so well. Tyre/road noise really isn’t bad, I didn’t have the run flat tyres fitted which can make a difference to noise and harseness. Yes the interior is a bit dated but it as buttons and the fantastic idrive, I had the option of the heads up display fitted, which is a brill piece of kit . The sliding rear seat is a great feature it does split so you can carry a passenger in the back as well as having more boot space.

    Hi Landyman. We haven’t ruled out extending our lease if we can’t find a car that ticks every box. Interesting that you say that the road noise isn’t too bad. I’ve watched and read a lot of reviews on the X1 and every single one of them has said that the road noise is excessive. I suppose it depends on what people are used to, but that’s one thing that I need to check out when we can eventually drive one!

    #143387 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    Glos Guy, re road noise – it’s all down to the road surface of course. Driving at speed on stretches of concrete road like parts of the M3 it’s annoyingly intrusive to me although MrsW isn’t bothered by it. The rest of the time I don’t really give it much thought. There’s no engine or wind noise to contend with so you just hear the road noise coming up through the floor. There are certainly quieter cars but there’s always some compromise and for me the handling and engine/gearbox more than make up for it.   Just make sure to test on different road surfaces.  We have stretch of new road nearby which is eerily quiet.

    As an aside I remember when the Honiton by-pass was opened with a concrete surface you could hear for miles around.  John Prescott who was transport minister responded to vigourous campaigning that it would be resurfaced withing 12 months.  Never happened of course…

    #143393 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    Thanks Wigwam. If we get an X1 I will add quite a few options, including the Harman Kardon HiFi, so if the road noise is as bad as the reviews suggest then I guess I can crank that up 😂

    #143395 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    I wouldn’t waste my money. The standard sound system is very very good and well up to the task!

    #143396 Reply
    Landyman

     

    Glos guy, when you road test a X1 just check what tyres are fitted, run flats or normal tyres the dealer I use spec run flats for demo cars.

    Interesting what you say about it depends on what you are used too, I still drive two Land Rover’s when I can manage the clutch, a 1963 series 2a with a tatty canvas hood and mud tyres, which is really really noisy and a 1998 defender 300tdi CSW with all terrains tyres which is noisy but not that bad really. The X1 is definitely better lol  😂

     

    #143397 Reply
    Landyman

    Wigwam I totally agree with you about the road surface.

    #143400 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    I wouldn’t waste my money. The standard sound system is very very good and well up to the task!

    Interesting. I’ve had loads of BMW’s over the years and always found the standard stereo to be poor. In fact the 5 Series that I sold last year was as perfect as a car could get, and better than any of the hundreds of cars of all makes and models that I have driven over many decades, but the one thing that I kicked myself about was that even though I added £10k of options I didn’t upgrade the sound system and it was still poor! Hopefully when I get to drive one it will have the standard sound system, but they nearly always add Harman Kardon systems to demonstrators and all stereos sound fine in a showroom!

    #143403 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    As in the other thread, the X1 sound system is the best standard system I’ve ever come across.  I’d be well pleased if our next car is as good.

    #143408 Reply
    NosherN
    Participant

    Im in total agreement with the comments made by Wigwam and Landyman.

    My X1 had Bridgestones fitted until most recently which have been replaced for Michellin Primacy. In my experience the road noise is always attributable to the road surface no matter what tyres you have fitted. Regarding the standard speaker set up. It is more than adequate unless you are a true audiophile or 25 year old Ibiza freek. Although admittedly, if it was a private purchase I would specify an audio upgrade as I do like my ‘Ibiza’ Club music;)

    Runflats would only be fitted to the optional 19″ wheels. all other sizes are non run flats.

    #143581 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    A question for the BMW X1 owners on this forum please. All the cars that I have had for as long as I can remember (including many BMW’s) have had ‘Auto hold’, which holds the vehicle stationary at traffic lights etc without the need to keep the brake applied. The brake is applied automatically when the car comes to a stop and releases automatically the second that you apply pressure to the accelerator. I have noticed that the X1 doesn’t have an auto hold button. I believe that the car has hill start assist, which prevents roll back on slopes, but I would miss this feature and find it a pain to have to keep my foot on the brake or apply the handbrake every time the car comes to a halt. Am I missing something? Does the X1 not have this feature or is it always on, hence no button? Thanks.

    #143582 Reply
    Intranicity

    I have a 2 series automatic, no Auto hold, just Hill start, never needed to apply the handbrake or sit with my foot on the break, the hill start appears to do everything as needed

    #143584 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    No it doesn’t Glos Guy.  If stopped facing uphill, the Hill Start will hold the car, but if stopped on the level the car will creep forward unless you keep your foot on the brake.

    #143585 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    No it doesn’t Glos Guy. If stopped facing uphill, the Hill Start will hold the car, but if stopped on the level the car will creep forward unless you keep your foot on the brake.

    Thanks Wigwam. I feared as much. It’s not a deal breaker, but a pain none the less given that it seems to be standard on most cars these days and has been for years. If you apply the electromechanical handbrake when you stop, will the brake release automatically when you depress the accelerator or do you need to physically release the brake?

    #143589 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    Yes, it will do that Glos Guy.

    #143593 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    Thank you so much for your help so far guys, which has been invaluable. I have now done a very detailed desktop review of each car, watched countless YouTube videos and read lots of reviews and I think that the car in pole position now (drumroll 🥁 😂)  is the BMW X1 20i xDrive xLine.

    Whilst the interior is undoubtedly quite dated compared to the other cars on my shortlist and most road testers report that road noise is excessive compared to other cars in the class, it is a 190PS petrol car with 4 wheel drive and, being a BMW, will have a perfect balance of performance versus economy. I have had lots of BMW’s over the years (3, 5 and 7 series) and know that they suit me, so I think this is probably the best (for me) of the cars that are available. The shortlisted cars are all very good, but I fancied a change from the Tiguan, the Kuga interior looked a bit low rent, the XC40 seems very expensive and the seats and infotainment are getting mixed reviews and the Q3 only comes with a 1.5 petrol which is deemed to be a bit short of puff at times and with a fairly poor auto. In short, none of the cars is perfect, including the X1, so compromise is necessary whatever we choose.

    The AP of £2,849 is very reasonable and I have managed to negotiate a further £500 off (making it just £2,349) plus 10% off any optional extras. I know that some forum users also deduct the £600 good condition bonus when saying what they have paid, but I don’t as I’d get that anyway if we walked away from the scheme, so it’s an artificial figure IMO.

    We are going to look at the car on Monday (don’t ask how!) and if we are comfortable with the seats and the wheelchair fits in the boot (which it should, as I’ve now got measurements) then we will order it. I can’t see the AP reducing in Q2 (famous last words? 😂) but the car is right at the top of the current price caps, so there’s a very slight chance that this variant could be removed. I have called Motability today to ask if they think there’s any possibility of the 25e PHEV version of the X1 coming on the scheme and they said that it’s not listed to appear. Obviously that’s not guaranteed 100% accurate info, but I might have considered the 25e had it appeared (even though it has one exhaust tailpipe, rather than the twin exhaust of the 20i – pathetic, I know, but it makes a big difference to the look 😂).

    Mrs Glos Guy may decide differently on Monday when we look at the car, but that’s where we are as of today. I asked this before, but didn’t really get much response, but can I ask existing X1 drivers if there are any options that they regret not ordering or if there are options that you have and wouldn’t be without? I usually add a lot of options but am going to try to resist the temptation this time!

    #143600 Reply
    coxy
    Participant

    Hi Glos Guy, I have the exact same model you are going to look at. The options I went for were the technology pack 1, Driving assistant plus and sports seats. The sports seats in my opionion are far better than the standard seats, Driving assisant plus gives you lane departure warning, traffic jam assist, active cruise control and high beam assistant.

    I had the 2 litre diesel X1 prior to this, the 2 litre petrol is so quiet at the side of the diesel and the performance is amazing.

     

    #143601 Reply
    Landyman

    Gloss guy, I think you will be very pleased with the X1.

    I know I made a bit of a joke comparing the X1 with my land rovers concerning noise but to be serious the volvo V40 I had was slightly quietly but not by much.

    The one thing I had extra that I would miss is the HUD, I’ve found it to be a great piece of kit, your speed, the speed limit of the road, satnav info, radio station and I think mobile phone, all in the line of sight, it is a piece of tech imo that should be fitted all cars.

     

    #143603 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    Tech pack 1 to get reverse camera and Comfort pack 2 to get electric seat adjust would be my choice if I was feeling generous to myself.

    #143644 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    Thanks for all your feedback on options folks. I have discussed it all with the boss, including which features would we miss or could easily live without. Subject to seeing the car on Monday I think we have ended up with the following;

    BMW X1 xDrive20i xLine AP £2,849 less £500 discount = £2,349

    Mineral Grey metallic (we were originally thinking Storm Bay, but think we prefer the darker grey as it suits the two tone alloys and contrasts better with the chrome highlights).

    Oyster Dakota leather (we tend to like either dark cars with light interiors or light cars with dark interiors – again, a contrast thing).

    Having read and watched countless reviews of the X1, there seem to be just two fairly constant criticisms. First is the fact that the interior is a bit dated now. It is, especially without a fully digital dash, but I prefer the fact that it still has buttons and dials for many things, rather than the distracting ‘touch screen for everything’ approach that is so distracting when driving. The second is road noise. We are hoping that the combination of a petrol engine, standard 18” alloys (which we like the look of) and the Harman/Kardon Surround Sound system (£600) will combine to lessen the din! Feedback on the standard fit sound system is mixed. Some say it’s good, others say it’s weak. Although I am no audiophile, I deeply regret not opting for it on my last 5 Series and frankly have always found the standard fit BMW sound systems to be poor. I don’t want to risk making the same mistake again.

    We would add Sun Protection Glazing (£300), purely for styling reasons (looks good with the dark grey paintwork). The only other option would be the £900 Technology Pack 1. I have had fully adaptive headlights and high beam assist on my last 3 or 4 cars and although we rarely drive at night now, I think that they are brilliant and I would miss them. However, this pack also comes with a Reversing Camera which we would miss on a daily basis, so that makes swallowing the price easier.

    After much debate, we decided that the other options were superfluous for our needs or simply not worth the cost. The 3 selected options come to £1,800, so £1,620 after discount. This makes the total outlay £3,965 (plus, of course the £10k sacrificed benefits over the 3 years) which I guess isn’t too bad for a car knocking on the door of £40k. We will also be able to retain a 190PS car with 4WD, both rapidly disappearing breeds on the Motability scheme. It will be our first petrol car in many years, so hopefully the engine won’t feel too short on oomph for overtaking etc

    Of course, all of this is dependent on us liking the X1 when we sit in it on Monday. In 2018 we dismissed it fairly quickly due primarily to the seats, which have since been changed. As I am ‘of generous proportions’ and my wife has to reverse in to the car and sit on the seat edge before pivoting around, we think that the standard seats will be better than the sports ones. I also need to check that the wheelchair will fit in the boot easily without the need for the sliding rear seats.

    I will report back after we look at the car. We may, of course, be back to the drawing board 😂

    #143654 Reply
    Wigwam
    Participant

    566 style wheels, Glos Guy. They are a thing of beauty (but a bugger to clean).

    #143656 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    I noticed those Wigwam, as they are a no cost option, but I prefer the look of the two tone ones that come as standard on the X-Line. Also easier to clean and I think that the grey painted sections will go nicely with the Mineral Grey car. All a matter of personal preference though. I remember the days when all standard BMW alloys were pig ugly so you had no choice but to upgrade. Can’t say that I could tolerate the ones that come as standard on the SE though!

    #143659 Reply
    coxy
    Participant

    Hi Glos Guy, for your information the engine in the X1, is now 178PS, performance figures not impacted compared to the 190PS, MPG figures now better.

    I believe this is the engine that is fitted in the Mini, noticed the change in the November 2021 brochure.(2021 Model)

     

    #143665 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    Thanks coxy. I wasn’t aware of that. If it’s the same performance and better mpg then that sounds like a win-win, as long as refinement isn’t affected (is it still a twin turbo?). I am hoping that the engine will be quiet, given that road noise seems to be a notable weakness in the X1. BMW seem to skimp on sound deadening with lower end models. The 5 Series that I had was near silent – and it was a diesel!

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 1 day ago by Glos Guy.
    #143668 Reply
    Dogboss

    It’s the run flat tyres that is the problem. The head up display will be at the top of my next list

    #143669 Reply
    Glos Guy
    Participant

    It’s the run flat tyres that is the problem. The head up display will be at the top of my next list

    I know that run flats get a bad reputation for noise, but I’ve had them on 3 different BMW 5 series cars and there was no road noise, so the issue seems to be more the X1’s lack of soundproofing. Besides, as far as I can tell, the X1 doesn’t have run flats now does it? Happy to be corrected, but the spec doesn’t mention them at all?

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