Maybe it’s my advancing years but there’s something extremely appealing to me about posh estates. A car for all reasons sort of approach.
It was one of the reasons that I was so keen to have a sneak preview at the new BMW 5-series Touring the other day. That, and, unlike my colleagues here, I still haven’t had a really good crawl over the new 5-series full stop.
What I found was a thoroughly convincing car. The new Five is yet another car that you really have to see in the metal to appreciate its looks. It’s far more elegant and handsome than the outgoing one – especially as a wagon.
And, just like the saloon, it’s roomier, quicker, greener. You get the picture.
Just as interesting though was chatting to the marketing bods about who buys the wagon over the saloon.
Touring buyers, apparently, are younger (average age 47, compared to early fifties), much more likely to participate in sport, have a more active life, be more likely to be paying their own money for the car and, generally, display more loyalty to BMW and the format than the four-door owners.
Some of that I would have guessed, mind you but even so.
A slightly thornier issue for the BMW sales force is the presence of the 5-series GT this time around. That, after all, is also a more practical version of the saloon. The marketing types reckon it will appeal to a different sort of customer, the GT being bigger in the back and pricier too. I’m not so sure though.
I think BMW’s in danger of eating its own lunch having the Touring and the GT in the same line-up. But we’ll have to wait and see.
Either way, the Touring’s probably going to be on my wish list. And not just because I want to look young and sporty either…