Although the crossover boom shows no signs of slowing down, BMW believes there’s still enough demand in this SUV-obsessed world for a good ol’ estate. Entering its sixth generation, the 5 Series Touring is officially here as an alternative to Bavaria’s large X-badged models. It carries the “G61” internal codename and will go down in history as the company’s very first electric wagon. The long-roof version of the 5 Series (G60) boasts a design that’s predictable both inside and out. Similar to its sedan counterpart, the new wagon is considerably larger than its predecessor. Compared to the G31, the follow-up model is 97 mm longer (at 5060 mm), 32 mm wider (at 1900 mm), and 17 mm taller (at 1515 mm). Additionally, it features a segment-leading wheelbase of 2995 mm, an increase of 20 mm over the model it replaces.
Up to 1,700 liters of Cargo Space
One of the primary reasons people opt for a wagon over an equivalent sedan is the additional cargo capacity it offers. According to BMW, the new 5 Series Touring can accommodate up to 570 liters with the rear seats in place. Folding down the standard 40:20:40-split bench increases the volume to an impressive 1,700 liters. There aren’t any variations in terms of volume depending on the powertrain since the gasoline, diesel, plug-in hybrid, and electric models share the same length, width, and height of the luggage area. In comparison, the sedan offers 520 liters for versions with combustion engines (including plug-in hybrids), while the electric BMW i5 Touring provides 490 liters of storage. The biggest wagon BMW has ever made comes with an electrically operated tailgate and the ability to fold the backrests of the rear seats from the cargo area. For even greater practicality, there are extra storage compartments beneath the load floor, including a dedicated area for the charging cable used on the plug-in hybrid and electric versions.
Tows up to 2,000 kilograms
Should you need to haul even more stuff, the optional trailer tow hitch is electrically retractable and allows you to tow up to 2,000 kilograms. However, you’re limited to 1,800 kg for the 530e plug-in hybrid and to only 1,500 kg for the fully electric i5 eDrive40. Wheel size starts at 18 inches for the versions powered solely by a combustion engine while the PHEVs and the EVs begin at 19 inches. Optional sets can be as large as 21 inches, and there are also aero wheels that reduce air resistance and are lighter as well. While the sedan’s profile is adorned by a “5” logo at the Hofmeister kink, this little detail is absent on the wagon. We’re also noticing the rear glass does not open independently of the tailgate anymore – a signature feature that BMW Touring models have had for decades.
iDrive 8.5, Vegan Interior and More
If you’ve been inside the eighth-generation 5 Series sedan, the Touring’s cabin should feel instantly familiar. From the fully vegan upholstery to the optional Interaction Bar, the Touring essentially carries over the saloon’s traits. It gets the Curved Display with iDrive 8.5 by combining a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster with a 14.9-inch touchscreen for the infotainment. Customers will be able to get the car with an 18-speaker Bowers & Wilkins surround sound system and real leather instead of the standard Veganza upholstery. One feature we wouldn’t do without would be the optional panoramic glass roof. It’s a huge panel that stretches from just behind the windscreen to almost ahead of the rear window while being flanked by the roof rails. It measures 1229 mm long and 792 mm wide, and BMW can throw in an interior sunblind for when you don’t want the cabin to be flooded with light.
Diesel and Gasoline Engines
When it comes to powertrains, we can’t help but notice there are not going to be any gasoline-only models available at launch. Initially, the new 5 Series Touring will be sold as a 520d with or without all-wheel drive, the 540d xDrive, and the 530e in both rear- and all-wheel-drive flavors. Should you want to do away with the combustion engine, the i5 will be offered in single-motor eDrive40 and dual-motor M60 flavors.
BMW estimates the car’s biggest market will be Germany, followed by the United Kingdom, Italy, Sweden, Belgium, and Japan. It claims the G61 has been developed primarily for Europe and Japan, catering to a long tradition of wagon-loving audiences in these regions. It’ll initially go on sale on the Old Continent in May, with other markets to follow from June.
Not Coming to United States
The regular versions of the 5 Series Touring are sadly (but predictably) not coming to the United States. However, sources close to Munich insist the hotly anticipated G99 M5 Touring will be launched on this side of the pond. The flagship model is scheduled to debut later in 2024 as the only 5 Series model with a V8 engine. The twin-turbo 4.4-liter S68 unit will work with an electric motor to form a plug-in hybrid setup inherited from the XM. Expect combined output to surpass 700 horsepower.
If you’re finding the new i5 Touring too big, we’ve been told the Neue Klasse platform will usher in an i3 Touring. Codenamed NA1, the second electric wagon from BMW is likely to hit the European market as early as 2026.
BMW 5 Series Touring Highlights