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Subcompact luxury SUV sounds like a small category, but it is pretty competitive. As the year comes to a close, the 2023 BMW X1 came in first on this list of subcompact luxury SUVs. What about this BMW sport utility vehicle makes it worthy of the number one spot? Plenty of modern technology and safety features undoubtedly help.

The best subcompact luxury SUV is the 2023 BMW X1

Kelley Blue Book has been hard at work testing sport utility vehicles all year. Brands had to deliver a plethora of technology and safety updates to keep up, but one stood out. The 2023 BMW X1 has grown up a lot since it first hit the market. It has better style and makes better use of the space inside, so it seems bigger than it is.

A new curved display houses the central infotainment display and the digital instrument cluster. BMW’s iDrive received another update that makes it easier to control everything from the climate system to the radio. What’s even more fun is that you can speak to the car, and it will speak back. Simply say, “Hey, BMW,” and give it instructions.

On top of that, BMW included many standard safety features that helped pave the way for this subcompact luxury SUV. Blind-spot monitoring and frontal collision avoidance are helpful. A new exit warning feature alerts the driver if a cyclist is approaching from behind. Adaptive cruise control and Extended Traffic Jam Assistant are available but not always standard.

What else makes the 2023 BMW X1 the best subcompact luxury SUV?

The best subcompact luxury SUV is the 2023 BMW X1
A 2023 BMW X1 | BMW

The 2023 BMW X1 didn’t win the title of best subcompact luxury SUV by chance. Equipped with a turbo four-cylinder engine, 241 hp feels like plenty of power for the X1. That’s also 13 more hp than last year’s version. BMW also increased the torque from 258 lb-ft to 295. Coupled with the new seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, you have quite the potent luxury SUV.

It also comes equipped with all-wheel drive standard, which makes it even more versatile. These days, buyers definitely need a vehicle that can do it all. From grocery trips to summer road trips and every daily drive in between, the 2023 BMW X1 is the best subcompact luxury SUV for the new year.

The 2023 X1 SUV starts at $39,100, gets 34 mpg, and has a zero to 60 mph time of 6.2 seconds. BMW didn’t offer any trim levels with the X1 since it comes pretty perfect from the factory.

If BMW isn’t your style, Audi and Mercedes have some luxury options


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In a close second, the 2023 Audi Q3 is another good option for a subcompact luxury SUV. It starts at $37,595 and also comes with all-wheel drive. The interior is pretty luxurious and well-appointed.

Finally, the 2023 Mercedes-Benz GLA came in just after that. Starting at $38,495, Mercedes sort of sets the bar for compact luxury SUVs. It has plenty of modern tech and safety features, not to mention exciting engine options.

While the X1 might not be the best option for all buyers, it is a solid contender for the best subcompact luxury SUVs of 2023.