BMW Reconsidering Luxury Pickup Truck

Trucks / 12 Comments

The luxury truck landscape is ripe for BMW to plant its pickup seed.

BMW unveiled the brand-new 5 Series in Italy this week. Now in its eighth generation, the 5 Series has been a mainstay of the brand for 50 years. And with the first-ever all-electric 5 Series introduced in the form of the BMW i5 alongside traditional combustion-powered 5ers, it will continue to be the brand's bread-and-butter model for decades. But what about new car segments?

In a roundtable discussion with the head of BMW Design, Domagoj Dukec, at the Villa D'Este, it was suggested that BMW is eyeing several new vehicle segments, one of which is a pickup truck.

"Since I've been at BMW, people have always been asking for a BMW pickup," Dukec revealed.

But the premium pickup segment is a tough nut to crack. Just ask Mercedes.


Mercedes famously tried and failed with a luxury pickup called the X-Class, based on a platform borrowed from Nissan, that debuted in 2017. BMW called the X-Class "a disappointment" at the time. And the indictment was proved accurate as only a few years later; the X-Class was abruptly pulled from the global market.

In 2018, BMW effectively ruled out building a truck as there were only a few regions in the world where a premium truck would be viable. However, the landscape is changing.

The US has the Rivian R1T, and mainstream brands have upped their pickup game with models like the Toyota Tundra Capstone, GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Ultimate, and the Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum.

"We always calculated [that a luxury truck] would just be for the US. Maybe things are changing," Dukec said.

The time seems right for BMW to revisit this niche.

"The SAV segment is anyway growing [and as a carmaker], you're looking at this, definitely."

KDesign AG via Behance
KDesign AG via Behance

One could speculate that after partnering with Toyota on the Z4/Supra, BMW could look at something like a Tacoma-based BMW-badged pickup using the modular TNGA-F platform. However, BMW previously said that badge engineering would not be an option.

BMW would want a truck that drives like a BMW. Mercedes learned that the hard way with the X-Class, which drove terribly according to most people who piloted it.

BMW built an X7-based pickup in 2019, but we suspect that when X5 goes electric, we might see an electric truck start to materialize.

BMW Welt / Facebook
BMW Welt / Facebook
BMW Welt / Facebook

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