- Jul 8, 2009
BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo may write epitaph for range's wagon bodystyle in America
BMW 5 Series Sports Wagon – Click above for high-res image gallery
Autoblog road test editor Damon Lavrinc is in Spartanburg, South Carolina to drive BMW's new all-conquering X6M, and in between bouts with the monster-motor'd crossover, he has had a chance to bend the ear of Martin Berkmann, manager of product planning for BMW North America, about another new capacious Bimmer – the 5 Series Gran Turismo.
Given the Bayern brand's increasingly crowded stable, it should come as no surprise that the boundary-blurring 5GT may result in the death of the sole 5 Series Sports Wagon model offered here in the States (a 530i model is shown). While the company's Touring variants carry a lot of water for BMW in other markets, the 535i xDrive SW makes up but a sliver of U.S. sales, and apparently BMW officials reckon the 5GT could just about extinguish what little demand there is.
By our measure, that's something of a shame, as the 535i xDrive wagon is a nice package all the way around. Further, the 4,100-pound wagon's more compact form, coupled with what figures to be a lower center of gravity ought to make for significantly better handling than the 4,800-pound 5GT. That said, our man Lavrinc is about to get a bonus preview ride on the company's test track in the Gran Turismo, so perhaps we'll learn otherwise very soon.
In any case, the official word hasn't come down yet, but judging by the fact that top officials are even willing to engage in discussions with us, this strikes us as a likely move.