BMW wagons have been far and far between in the United States while in Europe the Touring has a long tradition. The new M5 with a long roof has received the stamp of approval for a US visa, but what about other, cheaper practical cars? BMWBLOG sat down and had a chat about this hot topic with Bernd Körber, Senior Vice President BMW Brand and Product Management, Connected Company.

Interestingly, we learned the perception of wagons is significantly different in the US than in Europe. While customers from the Old Continent buy Touring models for their extra cargo capacity and the more convenient tailgate, Americans are about styling:

“When we discuss [this topic] with the U.S. colleagues or with the dealers, it’s very interesting because the demographics are totally different from Europe. For US dealers, the Touring’s design is a key thing, it’s a standout. Whereas in Europe, the touring is a practical, functional, and family-oriented car.”

BMW learned from a recent meeting with US dealers that a high-end 5 Series Touring is on the wishlist. The luxury brand is analyzing requests but cautions it doesn’t want to flood the US with a plethora of wagons. Internal analysis showed only top-tier versions make sense, which is why the G99 was the first to get the green light.

“That’s why they [dealers] also emphasized that to make it work effectively, it must operate within this unique, high-power niche. Additionally, they stated that only top-tier products, associated with a unique design, are effective. If you expand the volume too much or broaden the range excessively, you dilute the impact. Maintain the level it is developing towards—something unique and iconic. However, be cautious. Do not push it too hard because it does not sell on the same credentials that Touring has in Europe. Keep it at a top level of uniqueness. Also, manage the volume, and then it will be successful. But be careful. Do not become too excited. As soon as you make it mainstream, it will destroy itself. The trend will self-destruct.”

We then asked whether the high-end 5 Series Touring would be an i5 M60 or a gas model. “I think the discussion at the moment is that the US is very much influenced by the slowdown of BEV sales. So, I would say, of course, when you talk with dealers, they look at what sold last month.”

For now, Körber is not confirming any other Touring models for the US market besides the M5 G99. He told us it usually takes 2-3 years for a model to be approved for the North American market. That tells us another wagon based on the 5 Series G61 is unlikely to arrive anytime soon. Ideally, a new M550i with a V8 would be great, but for now, it’s just wishful thinking on our part.

In the meantime, the M5 Touring goes on sale in late 2024 in the US. We’re anticipating it’ll cost about $120,000 to $125,000 before options. A potential non-M wagon would surely cost five figures.