Now that the BMW M3 Touring is finally here, it takes its place as one of the best all-around Bimmers in recent memory. However, it got me thinking about BMW wagons. As great as many of its wagons have been over the years, high-performance wagons haven’t really been BMW’s thing, as there’s only been a few of them. So let’s take a look at some of the best all-time BMW wagons to see which is best.
G81 M3 Touring
The new BMW M3 Touring has to be on the list, as it’s the first one in history. It’s also a damn good car in its own right. It’s essentially just a BMW M3 Competition xDrive with a long roof and tailgate but that’s all we could have hoped for. The M3 Competition xDrive is a sensational sport sedan that’s both great to drive quickly and comfortable enough to use everyday. Adding a larger, more practical trunk makes it an even better package.
E61 BMW M5 Touring
This one is a long-time fan-favorite and it isn’t hard to see why. For starters, the wagon body style really helped fix the E60 M5 sedan’s frumpy rear end, so it looked better than usual. However, it’s still the only performance wagon to boast a naturally aspirated V10 engine, which was paired with an SMG automated manual and rear-wheel drive. While its transmission was aggravating and its interior technology was infuriating, its brilliant engine more than made up for it.
E34 M5 Touring
Well before the E61 M5 Touring was the car that started it all for BMW performance wagons. The E34 M5 Touring was the second-generation M5 but the first M Division wagon of all time. It had a naturally aspirated straight-six engine, a manual transmission, rear-wheel drive, and classic good looks. It was also the last ever M car to be hand built in Garching, making it a special Bimmer. It’s slow by modern standards but its iconic looks and glorious inline-six make it highly desirable.
G21 BMW M340i Touring
It might not be the fastest, sexiest, or most exciting BMW wagon of all time but it just might be the best all-around BMW wagon of all time. Few cars in BMW’s history have ever combined the M340i Touring’s speed, comfort, driving dynamics, and practicality. There’s literally nothing the M340i does poorly. Sure, it lacks the finesse of an M3 and it isn’t quite as engaging to drive as previous BMW sport sedans. However, it’s a great car to drive in any circumstance, its engine is brilliant, and it’s one of the few modern BMWs that still looks good. It deserves to be on this list.
So those are our best BMW wagons of all time but it’s near impossible to choose one. Different people will have different answers, based on different priorities. But if I had to choose one, I’d actually have to go with the E34 M5 Touring. The M340i Touring runs it really close for me but a naturally aspirated, hand-built inline-six with a manual gearbox is about the perfect daily driver combination for me. Plus, I think it’s the best looking car of the bunch.