The carmaker also expects the X4 to bring a new type of customer to the brand, just as the X6 did for those not satisfied with the wagon proportions of the X5 SUV.
"With the X6 we have attracted a completely different buyer than for the X5. We expect the same thing to happen with the X4 versus the X3," BMW sales boss Ian Robertson told industry paper Automotive News Europe.
While Land Rover has beaten BMW to the punch with its premium Evoque sports crossover, BMW CEO Norbert Reithofer told reporters this week that the German carmaker remains a pioneer in the segment.
"We created the premium Sports Activity Vehicle segment. Until then there were no all-wheel-drive cars [SUVs specifically] on the roads that were so sporty," Reithofer said.
As with the X6, an X4 line-up could conceivably include an M-badged version, perhaps powered by the twin-turbo 3.0 litre six that drives the limited-edition 1 Series M.