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(Pocket-lint) - The third generation of the BMW X1 has been announced, the smallest of BMW's X Series models and sitting right in the middle of crossover territory.

As a combustion car, you have the option of front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, marking this out as something a little different and an ideal run-around car for a small family.

But the news of the combustion version - with two petrol or two diesel options - takes something of a backseat with the news that this will also be available as a pure electric, branded as the BMW iX1.

It follows a similar approach as the BMW iX3, with a couple of tweaks to differentiate it from the combustion model but otherwise looking much the same.

This is likely to appeal to those sold on the style and wanting something conventional, rather than some of the slightly more dramatic departures from the norm that you’ll find elsewhere. In essence, it's a great "my first electric car" for anyone already a BMW fan.

The iX1 comes in fairly high spec, however. It's all-wheel drive for starters, with motors on both the front and rear axles, with a combined output of 313hp or 230kW. Badged as the iX1 xDrive30, it will deliver 0-62mph in 5.7 seconds.

There's a claimed range of 257-272 miles (413-438km), which sounds reasonable and pretty typical for a model of this size. The battery is encased in the floor of the body, but does see a small reduction in the boot space to 490 litres, compared to 540 litres in the combustion models.

That battery offers 64.7kWh of usable energy, it will support 11kW charging with 22kW as an option, will for DC charging it supports 130kW. That's not the fastest around - the likes of Hyundai and Kia offer almost double the charging speed - but it will still get you from 10 to 80 per cent charge in 29 minutes.

Moving to the interior we see a much bigger departure from the sort of thing that the BMW iX3 offered, as it's much more modern, like the BMW iX. That sees fewer buttons, while it's now powered by BMW Operating System 8.

That's designed to be much more intuitive, support great voice controls in the form of Hey BMW, while also offering Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

What will catch your eye is the sweeping interior display, multifunction buttons of the steering wheel and the heads-up display. The curve of that display is comprised of a 10.25-inch driver display and a 10.7-inch central display.

There's heaps of tech packed in, including UWB - ultra wideband - which will allow unlocking with digital keys on your smartphone, while the mapping claims to incorporate more data about where to stop and charge your car.

There's sure to be plenty of appeal in this crossover, with its elevated ride height, BMW quality and refreshed looks, offering a premium electric option.

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The BMW iX1 will be available October 2022 and will cost from £36,225 for the combustion models, the pricing on the iX1 is still to be confirmed.

Writing by Chris Hall.