BMW 2 Series Coupe G42 coupe purple M240i

Top 8 Small BMW Models in 2024 (Get More With Less!)

If you’re in the market for a car that has all of the bells and whistles, but won’t take up too much room on your driveway, then check out these top eight small BMW models!

They’re perfect for getting around town without worrying about fuel costs or squeezing into tight spaces.

Good luck trying to pick just one after you’re done reading!

The 8 best small BMWs

Now, you might be thinking, ‘Why small BMWs?’ Good question!

Small cars are great because they’re easy to drive around, especially in busy cities. Plus, they tend to be kinder to your wallet when it comes to fuel.

So, without further ado, let’s jump into the first contender!

1. BMW 1 Series

BMW 1 Series F20 blue in a corner
  • Length: ~170 inches (432 cm)
  • Width: ~71 inches (180 cm)
  • Height: ~56 inches (143 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 5
  • Trunk Capacity: ~13.4 cubic feet (380 liters)

Let’s kick things off with the BMW 1 Series, which is one of the smallest BMW models.

It’s like the little brother in the BMW family, but don’t be fooled – this little guy has a lot to offer.

Initially, it was BMW’s answer to the growing demand for premium compact cars. It quickly garnered a fan base, thanks to its blend of BMW luxury and small car convenience.

When it comes to performance, the 1 Series doesn’t skimp. It’s a joy to drive with its agile handling and engine options that are definitely powerful enough.

If you’re considering a used 1 Series and want to know what to look for, our article ‘Used BMW 1 Series: To Buy Or Not To Buy? (The Pros & Cons)‘ will help!

All in all, if you’re buying your first BMW or watching your budget, the 1 Series could be a home run. Don’t take our word for it – check out the four best BMW models to get as your first car here!

2. BMW 1M

BMW 1M orange
  • Length: ~172 inches (438 cm)
  • Width: ~71 inches (180 cm)
  • Height: ~56 inches (142 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 4
  • Trunk Capacity: ~13.1 cubic feet (370 liters)

Now, let’s talk about the BMW 1M – the BMW 1 Series’ sportier, racier cousin.

The 1M, which stands for 1 Series M Coupe, made its entrance in 2011 and became an instant classic. What makes the 1M special is its limited production run – only about 6,300 units were made.

This car is not just a ride; it’s a collector’s item!

And that’s the exact reason it made our article of the best BMW years and models.

The BMW 1M features a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged inline-six engine, rear-wheel drive, and some of the most aggressive bodywork in BMW’s lineup.

Fun fact: The 1M even uses various components from the bigger BMW M3, like its aluminum suspension bits and brakes.

For those into tinkering with their cars, the 1M is a gem. (Discover more mod-friendly BMWs in our article here.)

Being a limited edition, the BMW 1M was not cheap when new, and its value has held pretty strong.

So, if you manage to find one for sale, expect to pay a premium.

3. BMW i3

BMW i3 red
  • Length: ~158 inches (401 cm)
  • Width: ~70 inches (178 cm)
  • Height: ~63 inches (160 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 4
  • Trunk Capacity: ~9.2 cubic feet (260 liters)

Time to go electric!

Launched in 2013, the i3 is BMW’s first zero-emissions mass-produced vehicle.

The BMW i3 is like a spaceship on wheels. It has a carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic body (super light and strong), distinctive U-shaped LED lights, and those cool rear-hinged back doors.

It also has a unique interior.

The materials are sustainable (hello, recycled plastics and natural fibers), and the layout is airy and modern. In fact, the i3’s interior is so amazing that it made it onto our list of the five best BMW interiors.

BMW i3 interior top down view

4. BMW 2 Series Coupe

BMW M240i 2 Series Coupe
  • Length: ~179 inches (454 cm)
  • Width: ~72 inches (184 cm)
  • Height: ~55 inches (139 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 4
  • Trunk Capacity: ~13.8 cubic feet (390 liters)

Get ready for some sleek curves – say hello to the BMW 2 Series Coupe!

The 2 Series Coupe debuted in 2014, succeeding the 1 Series Coupe.

It was designed to blend the practicality of a compact car with the sportiness that BMW is renowned for. And boy, did it deliver!

The newest G42 BMW 2 Series Coupe is an eye-catcher, with its long hood and short overhangs.

The steering is sharp, the suspension is well-tuned, and the car just begs to be driven on winding roads.

The BMW 2 Series Coupe is positioned as a more affordable entry into the BMW Coupe family. However, affordable doesn’t mean basic. You get a lot of car for your money, including that all-important BMW driving experience!

5. BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe

BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe F44
  • Length: ~178 inches (453 cm)
  • Width: ~71 inches (180 cm)
  • Height: ~56 inches (142 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 5
  • Trunk Capacity: ~15.2 cubic feet (430 liters)

Introduced in 2020, the Gran Coupe is another relatively new member of the 2 Series family. It’s like the 2 Series Coupe’s grown-up sibling, with four doors and five seats!

It stands out with its elegant frameless doors and a sleek sloping roofline.

Step inside, and you’ll find plenty of tech with BMW’s iDrive infotainment system, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. Plus, you can add the optional ambient lighting for that extra touch of class.

All in all, it’s a small car that can wear many hats – family car, executive cruiser, or weekend warrior.

6. BMW Z4

BMW Z4 red
  • Length: ~170 inches (432 cm)
  • Width: ~73 inches (186 cm)
  • Height: ~51 inches (130 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 2
  • Trunk Capacity: ~9.9 cubic feet (281 liters)

Next, let’s dive into the world of roadsters with the BMW Z4!

The Z4 is BMW’s two-seater convertible, where open-air freedom meets BMW’s performance.

On a sunny day, there’s nothing like feeling the wind in your hair as you cruise in the Z4. Design-wise, it’s a stunner with its long hood, bold kidney grille, and sleek LED headlights.

With its rear-wheel-drive layout and ideally balanced chassis, this roadster is a joy to drive!

Related article: 6 Best BMW Z4 Models (+ Most Reliable & Years To Avoid!)

7. BMW X1

BMW X1 orange
  • Length: ~177 inches (450 cm)
  • Width: ~73 inches (184 cm)
  • Height: ~65 inches (164 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 5
  • Trunk Capacity: ~17.7 cubic feet (500 liters)

It’s time to go up a notch – literally!

You already guessed it; it’s the BMW X1.

The X1 might be an SUV but don’t think for a second that it’s not fun to drive. It handles like a dream, with responsive steering and a suspension that balances comfort and agility.

The BMW X1 is like a Swiss Army knife – it’s versatile, practical, and impeccably made.

8. BMW X2

BMW X2 M35i
  • Length: ~172 inches (436 cm)
  • Width: ~72 inches (184 cm)
  • Height: ~60 inches (153 cm)
  • Passenger Capacity: 5
  • Trunk Capacity: ~16.6 cubic feet (470 liters)

Last but not least is the BMW X2, the smallest SUV in BMW’s lineup!

Launched in 2018, the X2 was designed for those who wanted the practicality of an SUV but in a smaller package and with an extra dash of style.

The X2’s coupe-like roofline, bold kidney grille, and optional eye-catching color schemes make it stand out.

The steering is sharp, the engine is eager, and the suspension is tuned to favor a more dynamic driving experience.

Because of that, it has a bit of a sportier nature than the X1. So if style and driving enjoyment are high on your priority list, the X2 is worth every penny.

What is the appeal of small BMWs?

Before we pick a winner, let’s take a moment to talk about why these small BMWs are so appealing to some people.

First, small BMWs are not too big, not too small, but just right.

Whether zipping through narrow city streets or squeezing into that last parking spot at the mall, a compact BMW is often the perfect fit.

Besides, smaller cars generally have smaller price tags, and that’s true for BMWs too. Plus, they tend to be more fuel-efficient, so you’ll spend less money at the gas pump.

Who doesn’t love saving some cash?

And don’t let the size fool you; small BMWs are packed with luxury. Leather seats, cutting-edge tech, sleek designs – it’s all there in a neat little package.

Here’s the real kicker – small BMWs are ridiculously fun to drive. They’re nimble, agile, and responsive. Taking a sharp turn feels like a breeze!

BMW M2 competition white while drifting

In a nutshell, what’s not to love?

FAQs about small BMWs

If you have any questions about small BMWs, take a look at these FAQs!

What is the smallest BMW?

The smallest BMW is the BMW i3, which measures ~158 inches (401 cm) in length, ~70 inches (178 cm) in width, and ~63 inches (160 cm) in height.

Is a BMW 3 Series a small car?

The BMW 3 Series is not quite as small as the 1 Series, but it’s not a giant either. In the car world, we’d call it a compact executive car. That means it’s a bit larger and more spacious than your typical small car but still pretty manageable in size.

Is a BMW X1 small?

The BMW X1 is BMW’s smallest SUV, often called a compact SUV or a crossover. It has the roominess and taller ride of an SUV but in a smaller, more city-friendly package.

The verdict: Which is the best small BMW?

Alright, we’ve reached the moment you’ve all been waiting for. After going through the lineup of small BMWs, it’s time to crown the champion.

But wait, let’s get something straight.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer here. Different people have different tastes and needs.

So, let’s break it down into categories:

Best for performance enthusiasts: BMW 1M

If you live for the thrill of acceleration and fast corners, the BMW 1M is your match made in heaven. It’s a powerful engine wrapped in a compact package. With its performance and a hint of exclusivity, it’s a classic in the making.

Best for eco-friendliness: BMW i3

For those of you who want to embrace the future and do something good for our lovely planet, the BMW i3 is the top choice. Its electric engine is not just whisper-quiet but also surprisingly peppy.

Best for sun seekers: BMW Z4

If feeling the wind in your hair as you cruise down open roads sounds like paradise, then the BMW Z4 is your dream car. With its stylish looks and fantastic handling, every drive feels like a mini vacation.

Best for style icons: BMW X2

If making a statement is your thing, the BMW X2 is the fashionable choice. Its bold, unique design is bound to get you noticed.

Best all-rounder: BMW X1

Finally, we can state that the BMW X1 is the best small BMW overall. It’s perfect for those who want a little bit of everything – luxury, practicality, performance, and style. The X1 is versatile, comfortable, and drives like a dream. Whether on an adventure or just running errands, the X1 has your back!


And there you have it!

We’ve picked the best small BMWs for different preferences.

So, which one is calling your name?

Whichever you choose, enjoy the ride!

More BMW model lists

Interested in other interesting lists about BMW models? Find them here!

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