Key official describes prospect of truck as 'an interesting proposition'; would rival upcoming Mercedes-Benz GLT
22 July 2016

BMW could join its long-time rival Mercedes-Benz in the growing luxury pick-up truck market.

Asked whether rumours suggesting BMW had plans to enter the pick-up ranks were on the mark, BMW Australia managing director Marc Werner said: “We are looking at this closely," before adding: "a ute is certainly an interesting proposition.”

Werner’s comments are the first acknowledgment that BMW is looking at the possibilities of launching a pick-up truck.

It was recently revealed that BMW has a new global sales strategy to build more individual market-specific models, which has already produced a new front-wheel-drive 1 Series saloon for selected markets, including China.   

Werner, the former BMW area manager for such diverse markets as Japan, Russia, India and South Korea, refused to confirm whether detailed discussions on the possible introduction of a pick-up had already taken place at boardroom level. However, he said: “Here at BMW, we are constantly looking at market trends. We are always on the lookout for market opportunities and for further product derivatives that would be suitable for our customers.”

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Werner’s comments have added fuel to recent rumours that BMW could broaden its model base to include selected commercial vehicles in the future, as part of joint venture operations with Toyota, whose Hi-Lux pick-up sells well in many markets.  

Mercedes-Benz shocked its luxury car rivals in 2015 by announcing plans to develop a Mercedes-Benz GLT pick-up based on the Nissan Navara.

BMW's lack of expertise in the commercial vehicle market is the main obstacle in the way of a BMW pick-up, although the mooted link-up with Toyota could open up new areas of potential growth.

BMW’s success in the luxury SUV market, with models ranging from the X1 to the X6, could also provide it with opportunities to develop a pick-up truck boasting greater refinement and performance than that being targeted by Mercedes-Benz, albeit for a higher price.  

In 2011, BMW’s M performance division released a series of photographs depicting an M3-based pick-up truck as an April Fool’s day prank.

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Comments
13

22 July 2016
Mercedes-Benz seems perfectly happy to adulterate it's badge by sticking it on various re-heated Renaults and Nissans, so it's no surprise that BMW might follow suit in pursuit of profits, and to hell with its heritage and pedigree...

22 July 2016
Daniel Joseph wrote:

Mercedes-Benz seems perfectly happy to adulterate it's badge by sticking it on various re-heated Renaults and Nissans, so it's no surprise that BMW might follow suit in pursuit of profits, and to hell with its heritage and pedigree...

Why do some people think the likes of BMW should only build cars for 'them' or what they deem to be the 'right' vehicle? What pithy arrogance.

22 July 2016
Calm down, he was expressing a view that is all. Why so critical just because he doesn't think what you think?

22 July 2016
Not sure what I've said to provoke your hostility. I haven't owned a BMW for over twenty years and am unlikely to do so again. (My last one was a 1993 E30 325i convertible.) The last BMW I drove was a rented 320d M-Sport X-drive, just a month ago. It was reasonably comfortable, drove reasonably well, was reasonably well finished...and was as dull as ditch water. It's no wonder it sells so well as it's the perfect car for business users hammering up and down motorways. It's also totally removed from the sporting saloons that made BMW "special" in former years. If bemoaning BMW's descent into the mainstream makes me "arrogant" then so be it, although at least I'm "pithy" which I take as a compliment☺.

22 July 2016
Oohh, nice photoshop Autocar. If you give me five minuets I could do better on my phone...

23 July 2016
Lightningduck wrote:

Oohh, nice photoshop Autocar. If you give me five minuets I could do better on my phone...

Looks like a Holden ute to me

23 July 2016
Lightningduck wrote:

Oohh, nice photoshop Autocar. If you give me five minuets I could do better on my phone...

I think that's the BMW mock up referred to in the article as an April fools day joke.

23 July 2016
Could BMW go one step further, and create the M-sport motorhome? I mean, this design just cries out to have a demountable camper unit fitted, enabling perhaps that trip to the Nordschleife with convenient self contained stop-over.

24 July 2016
Lightningduck wrote:

Oohh, nice photoshop Autocar. If you give me five minuets I could do better on my phone...

Not a Autocar photoshop...

23 July 2016
I don't know if anyone else has noticed, but Mercedes Benz already makes quite a large variety of trucks and vans and has done for fifty plus years. You might have seen one or two on a road near you, or even ridden on one of their buses. They are one of the worlds largest manufacturers of those too.
The last time I drove a Sprinter van it struck me more as a Transit competitor than a luxury vehicle but I suppose BMW could build a competitor to that too. And along those lines, perhaps a competitor to the Actros line of heavy trucks?

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Our Verdict

BMW X5

The X5 sticks to BMW's well-proven SUV formula, delivering a competent and refined off-roader – but one that's lacking the extra flourishes found in a Range Rover Sport or Porsche Cayenne Turbo

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week