The BMW X1 has been on the loose for over a while now in Europe, but it won't be found on the streets here in the U.S. until later this year, likely as a 2012 model instead of the expected 2011 tag. As we wait patiently for BMW's smallest crossover yet (if you don't count the MINI Countryman, that is) we have these fresh new spy shots of what appears to be an X1 in M Sports garb, nearly undisguised. The package itself has already been revealed, but, like the X1 itself, is not yet on sale in the U.S. These spy shots may indicate it's still being tweaked for American consumption.
The M Sports treatment is a familiar and popular option amongst Bimmerphiles. Dressing a vehicle up with flashier, more aggressive aerodynamic work, unique badging, typically some interior upgrades, and in some cases, a tauter, more sport-tuned suspension, the M Sports package bridges the gap between BMW's standard vehicles and their slightly unhinged M variants.
We expect the treatment for the 2012 X1 to follow this pattern closely. As the spy shots reveal, the X1 M Sport will likely get a new front, side, and rear aero package, and though this prototype isn't wearing them, we'd expect optional larger alloys to better fill in those big wheel wells. From the shape of the rear bumper cutouts, don't expect any quad-tip, dual-outlet exhausts for the X1, though.
We'll keep you posted as more images of the X1 M Sport surface, but for now, pore over these shots and let us know if you can spot any other differences in the comments below.