"The enduring popularity of BMW’s first SAC (Sports Activity Coupe) is borne out by its consistently high sales figures." So quoth BMW in the release announcing the X4 concept, a follow-up to the X6, the aforementioned hunched hatch that BMW calls a Sports Activity Coupe, and whose consistently high sales figures reached a grand total of 6,749 copies in this country last year, outselling only the aging Z4 in BMW's lineup. Nevertheless, get ready to see something very much like this on our roads in 2014.
The X4 stands to fit in a region for those who enjoy the practicality of an SUV, mixed with the styling and lack of rear headroom of a coupe. While it casts a similar shadow to its big brother, it should appeal to those who can’t reach the roughly $60,ooo price tag associated with an X6. And like the X6, it isn’t exactly pretty, recalling for older wags the glory days of the AMC Eagle.
It’s another indication of BMW chasing ever-higher sales through new niches, and who can blame them? But it’s also a distinct reminder of the diluted products deriving from the once specialty brand. And while Mercedes and Audi may not compete in this segment just yet, let’s not pretend they won’t follow suit, as BMW proves there’s money up for grabs.
No details are offered on the X4’s interior, although little headroom for those in the backseat remains a given. We also don’t know much on the power front, but BMW’s turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 stands likely to make an appearance. The X4 will be produced in Spartanburg, S. C., alongside the X3, X5, and X6. It’s a car with a market, and some semblance of demand for those who find the Acura ZDX too plebeian. It’s just not a sexy market. And that’s what BMWs used to be.