E25 Approved For the 2016 BMW X1

Source: By Minnesota Biofuels Association • Posted: Sunday, July 16, 2017

Yesterday, we reported how MINI has approved the E25 for its Hardtop models since 2014. And as it turns out, it’s parent company, BMW AG, has done likewise with one of its 2016 models.

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Yes, E25 is approved for the 2016 BMW X1 xDrive28i – the only X1 variant offered in North America.  And like the MINI Hardtops, the 2016 BMW X1 is not a flex fuel vehicle.

Speaking of the MINI Hardtop, the approval to use E25 in the 2016 BMW X1 should not come as a surprise as the 2016 BMW X1 features the same 2.0L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine in the MINI John Cooper Works (JCW) that pumps out 228 hp.

It is also the same engine featured in the MINI Cooper S, although that engine delivers 189 HP. The version in the BMW X1 and the MINI Hardtop JCW is tuned to produce 228 HP.

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The 2.0L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine in the X1 is the same as the MINI Hardtop JCW

It has to be noted the 2016 BMW X1 xDrive28i is the first X1 to feature this new 2.0L 4-cylinder turbocharged engine.

What’s surprising is that unlike the MINI Hardtop JCW which requires fuel with an octane rating of 93 (which is around the octane rating for E25), BMW says the recommended fuel grade for the BMW X1 is 91 octane (the minimum is 89 octane). Perhaps this is a sign BMW is warming up to the idea of allowing the use of higher blends of ethanol in its vehicles?

Remember, this is the same BMW that hasn’t approved E15 in its best selling 3-series model line-up, which also feature, among others, 2.0L turbocharged engines.

But as we pointed out yesterday, these new efficient and high-powered engines developed by BMW may soon be the standard in the MINI lineup and may even work its way to the other models under the BMW brand. After all, it only makes sense for BMW to maximise the use of the new engines it has developed.

There are still questions as to why BMW chose E25 instead of E30 which is more commonly available. Still, this is a positive development and a sign that new small displacement efficient and turbocharged engines need higher octane to run on, and the answer is in fuels with higher ethanol content.