In Europe at least, the 5 Series GT represented a rare misstep for BMW.

Conceived as a fallback in case legislation, economic downturn or snowballing buyer-consciousness killed off the large SUV, the 5 GT has spent a lifecycle looking like the answer to a question that no one had asked.

BMW 6 Series GT revealed at Frankfurt 

Beyond its frumpy appearance (see pic below), part of the problem was its placement: who needed a car that was practically the length of a 7 Series with vast rear headroom but not a vast boot? The decision, then, to move the concept upmarket is understandable. In the headier atmosphere of the 6 Series’s reputation, the product might find customers more inclined to embrace the idea of an expensive liftback that’s neither a pure-blood tourer nor a full-blown X-car.

Bmw 5 series gt rear 1

The positioning makes even more sense if BMW is intent on shuffling the rest of the BMW 6 Series range into different line-ups, thus providing the badge with a properly resolved identity rather than its current status as a leftfield 5 Series appendage.

It’s likely to be aided in that respect by the divisive styling of the also-large BMW X6, an SUV that car buyers tend either to embrace or wholly reject.

The 6 Series GT is plainly designed to avoid such contentiousness, but that guarantees nothing in a market still happily wedded to the traditional idea of saloon, tourer and high-riding SUV. The verdict then, not unsurprisingly, remains very much out.