Is BMW finally realizing that people want fast, powerful wagons?
American car enthusiasts were forced to sit idly by as BMW revealed the first-ever M3 Touring wagon, which will not be sold in the US market despite a petition with over 50,000 signatures. BMW hasn't offered a wagon in the US since the 2019 3 Series, and this is far from the first time an M-branded long-roof model has been kept from us. Though the current and previous generation BMW M5 variants were only offered in the sedan body style, the E60-generation spawned an M5 Touring variant (the E61 wagon chassis) that was only sold in Europe.
It's taken a two-generation hiatus, but rumors from Bimmerpost claim the M5 Touring will make a return for the next generation. The M5 sedan (codenamed G90) will start production in July 2024, while the M5 Touring (reportedly codenamed G99) is earmarked for November 2024.
Thus far, we've only spotted the next-generation M5 Sedan out testing, so the Touring is still nothing more than a rumor. Perhaps we will see spy shots of the wagon body style soon.
Both models will reportedly run a hybrid powertrain with BMW's new S68 twin-turbo V8 that will also find employment under the hood of the upcoming XM flagship SUV. This engine will bear the same 4.4-liter displacement as the current S63 engine, though it should build upon the 627 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque output in the current M5 CS. Rumors estimate the electric motor will contribute around 200 hp, bringing the total output to around 750 hp.
If this rumor is correct, BMW will finally jump into battle against the Audi RS6 Avant and Mercedes-AMG E63, both of which have gone without competition from the M Division since the E61 left production. Both Audi and Mercedes managed to create a business case for the US, despite it being a limited market for wagon sales, by offering the SUV-like A6 allroad and the E-Class All-Terrain. Perhaps BMW could also create a lifted 5 Series Touring to offset the cost of selling the M5 here.
Even if BMW does build an M5 Touring, there's zero guarantee it will come to the US market. We haven't been able to buy an M5 Touring since the E34 generation, which was produced last century.