BMW's Progressive Activity Sedan gets the green light

BMW is set to take a huge risk by pressing ahead with the launch of the Progressive Activity Sedan (PAS) executive hatchback, a ‘5-series GT’.

The controversial BMW PAS is due to be unveiled in late 2009. One senior company source has told Autocar that the 5-series GT is “one of the bravest designs ever signed off by BMW”. But insiders describe the car as a ‘modern grand tourer with a luxury cabin and interior flexibility’.

The BMW PAS expected to be priced between the BMW 5-series and BMW 7-series and pitched at drivers who like a higher driving position but are not keen on full-scale SUVs.

One source has suggested that BMW is aware of an ageing population who now find conventional saloons’ seat positions too low for comfort.

Those who have seen the 5-series GT in the metal describe the BMW PAS as more of a ‘tall 7-series hatchback than a low-rise X6’.

The car is based on the latest version of BMW’s large rear-drive platform, first seen under the recently launched BMW 7-series.

Although the precise dimensions are not yet known, the PAS is slightly longer than a 5-series saloon and just shorter than a 7-series. It also rides slightly higher on its wheels than a normal road car.

The car’s overall height is pitched almost exactly between a 5-series and an X6, with higher than normal seating positions.

Insiders say this layout allows the PAS to offer the same rear leg room as a new long-wheelbase 7-series. Despite the sloping roof line, head room is said to be more than adequate.

The cabin is based on the same flowing theme revealed in the new Z4, with a wide centre console. Sources say front passengers get a “relaxing, semi-raised position”.

Although the 5-series GT gets a lower body similar to that of a saloon, the roof line and rear hatch are pure X6.

The car’s front end has more of a ‘nose cone’ look, rather like the recently cancelled CS concept. It also gets frameless doors, though there are no plans for a convertible spin-off.

The gently sloping roof line curves into an X6-style ‘fastback’ tailgate. The rear of the car is also said to be like the X6, with a lip at the base of the hatch window and a flat rear panel underneath it, between the rear light clusters.

Sources say the tailgate works in a similar way to the Skoda Superb’s, either as a hatch or with a saloon-style boot lid. But in the BMW it’s the upright rear panel that flips up, offering a letter box-shaped opening.

No definitive details have emerged about the 5-series GT’s technical specification, but it’s thought most European models will get a 3.0-litre turbodiesel engine and most US cars will use a 3.0-litre turbocharged petrol.

Hilton Holloway

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Comments
16

31 December 2008

Impossible to believe, but - judging by the pic - here's a BMW that manages to trump every other large BMW for sheer, stupefying ugliness.

31 December 2008

If your illustration is anything to go by I think this will be one terrific looking car, don't bangle this one BMW.

I've always thought large hatchbacks are a great idea. BMW is the new Saab!

31 December 2008

Vauxhall and Renault tried this about 5 years ago with the Signum and Vel-Satis - when is the last time you saw one of those...?

You could argue that its badge snobbery, but the Mercedes R-Class has hardly been a success either.

Personally, I think they should have canned this car as it has no direct competition (that should tell them something). The CS Concept would have been a great, image-boosting range topper and rivalled the Panamera and Rapide. With it being based on the 7 series, development cost would have been low too.

31 December 2008

I am surprised no-one on here or in the media has asked what the hell a 'Progressive Activitiy' is??

Ah yes, paying for a massively overpriced MPV is the way to go! Not quite as pointless as an X6 but pretty close. Anyone who buys one of these is as stupid as an X6 buyer or a Merc RL buyer. Still, most of the people who buy are not actually using their own money but that of their company that just made 5 people redudant so the MD can keep himself in ugly and pointless Beemers!!!

31 December 2008

[quote Quattro369]but the Mercedes R-Class has hardly been a success either.[/quote]

But come on, from this pic at least the PAS is better looking than the frumpy R-Class which looks like just another station wagon. I can see many football wives doing a run in this, but probably too embarrassed in the R.

[quote Quattro369]With it being based on the 7 series, development cost would have been low too.[/quote]

The article says the PAS platform is also 7-based.

And say what you want about the X6, the top diesel model is an arguably better car than the new diesel Cayenne.

31 December 2008

The CS was not going to be based round the 7, though. It was going to be an entirely separate platform and that was where the issues lay. Unless, of course, they have found a way round this and are giong to stretch the 7's platform to use for the CS...

31 December 2008

Appalled by their usurping as the pr ic ks car of choice mostly due to the Compact - 1, 3 and X6 series of cars - BMW have gone all out to regain the title and the love of Autocar by produsing the most pr ick y of cars for the most pr ic ky of motorists - LOOK OUT AUDI HERE COME BMW AND THEY WANT THE UBER PR IC K CROWN BACK.

31 December 2008

[quote scumster]Appalled by their usurping as the pr ic ks car of choice mostly due to the Compact - 1, 3 and X6 series of cars - BMW have gone all out to regain the title and the love of Autocar by produsing the most pr ick y of cars for the most pr ic ky of motorists - LOOK OUT AUDI HERE COME BMW AND THEY WANT THE UBER PR IC K CROWN BACK.
[/quote]

you do know you could just use the work prick, not pr ic k

31 December 2008

Pr ic k

ZM

31 December 2008

Are BMW losing the plot?

What on earth do they want this AND the X6 for??? Surely they would be better off doing their own 'CLS' based on the 5 Series?

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