BMW 5-series GT sales in the US have been disappointing, according to its boss of North America.
Jim O’Donnell said that the 5-series GT was mainly being sold to 7-series owners trading down and not 5-series Touring customers trading up, as was intended.
Indeed, he conceded that he wished BMW still sold the estate version of the new 5-series that North America decided against taking, as the firm was now losing customers to Mercedes.
"The disappointment I have is that I thought a lot of our 5-series station-wagon customers would go with the GT," he told Auto News. "In point of fact, that is not happening. We have lost those customers to the competition - mainly to Mercedes-Benz. The GT has attracted 7 and 5-series customers and conquests, but not the station-wagon customer we had hoped."
Dealers have said US buyers had not warmed to the 5-series GT’s styling or hatchback. BMW had expected to sell up to 8000 5-series GT units per year in North America, but it only shifted 2848 in 2010 and sold just 720 units between January and April 2011.