self test BMW 220i Active Tourer: a family resemblance

The BMW 220i Tourer livens up the offer somewhat
The BMW 220i Tourer relaunches the somewhat ‘forgotten’ range of compact family cars with SUV-level performance (©Tom Kirkpatrick)

While all manufacturers are leaving the station wagon segment, bmw proves that the range still has a future with the new generation tourer. It is a daring bet destined to update a model that is no longer used and has been overtaken by the success of SUVs and other crossovers or MPVs: the Monospace compactwhose sales literally melted away.

An advanced compact MPV

But BMW dares to take the market in the wrong direction by innovating this family genre with the 2 series of his Active Tourer incorporating new technologies, including electrification with the addition of a small electric motor. But BMW has chosen to stick to the identity of its family minivan, the design of which has also changed, without renouncing the ingredients that made the 1 Series a success: volume and comfort.

A new smoother design

What stands out the most is the new design of the minivan, which inherits a smooth body and a wide grille (in black or chrome depending on the version) of the most beautiful impact, an attribute that is very fashionable today. . We also appreciate the design of the thinned out almond lights with a subtle but aesthetic light signature.

In terms of comfort, the 220i Active Tourer remains a safe bet and asserts itself as a true 4-seater

More flowing lines, technologies, space and comfort: a pity that the 5th place is too narrow
More fluid lines, the latest technologies, space and comfort: it’s a pity that the 5th place is too narrow at the back… (©Tom Kirkpatrick)

The 5 spoke wheels also help to give the car a sportier and less “comfortable” look. At the rear, on the other hand, the manufacturer seems to have had less leeway: the compact remains a bit bulkier, but the dual-flow exhaust gives a little variety, which suggests good performance.

Significantly improved seating comfort

In terms of comfort, the 220i Active Tourer remains a safe bet and asserts itself as a true 4-seater. Every passenger has space and benefits from revised and greatly improved seating comfort thanks to (sliding) seats with side and lumbar support. We find the old generation 40/20/40 rear seat, except for the plug-in hybrid versions.

The little – : in the rear, the narrow middle seat is mainly used for troubleshooting. A disadvantageous choice for a family car.

Comfort and embedded technology

The interior ambience also evolves and is largely inspired by that of the electric crossover iX. The compact is sober, with a stripped-down but stylish board consisting of a 10.25-inch instrumentation screen and a 10.7-inch infotainment screen. Black and aluminum dominate this decor, but the whole lacks a bit of color.

Hybridization remains light (48V for 19 hp) but boosts the honest performance of this tourer
Hybridization remains light (48V for 19 hp) but boosts the honest performance of this tourer (© Clay Kirkpatrick)

Ultimately, this economical family MPV offers the same advantages as an SUV

Under the hood, on the other hand, the family compact remains efficient. If BMW made the surprising decision to still offer a diesel (the 150hp 218d), the petrol range is based solely on a 3-cylinder 1.5-litre engine, rated at 136hp for the 218i or 170hp for the the 220i is offered. Two rechargeable hybrid versions with 245 and 326 hp are expected for the summer. The BMW 220i Active Tourer is at its peak on the road. Even if it weighs 1.5 tons, the machine swallows the 0 to 100 in 8 seconds and reaches 221 km/h.

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The little + : the “My modes” button (on the center console) that allows you to control the electric recuperation by adapting it to the traffic.

With mild hybridization

If the hybridization remains light (48 V for the electric motor with 19 hp at 55 Nm of torque), it nevertheless brings a revival of form that increases the performance of the machine, especially when overtaking, and which also makes it possible to contain consumption. In the end, this frugal family compact (5.9 l/100km) with the same benefits as an SUV seems well suited to appeal to family enthusiasts.

BMW 220i Active Tourer: performance

Engines: 3 cylinders + 19 hp electric motor
Power: 156 hp at 240 Nm
Weight: 1,520 kg
Top speed: 221 km/h
0-100km/h in 8.1 seconds
Consumption: 5.9 l/100 km
Emissions CO2: 133 g/km
Trunk: 415 liters
PRICE: from €36,600

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