At Long Last, BMW M5 Touring Coming to America

Sometimes, you question your good fortune. Other times, you keep your mouth shut and don’t tempt the gods of gasoline to rethink their decision. We won’t ask why. We’ll just report this: BMW is bringing an M5 Touring wagon to America.

If that statement makes you excited, permit me a moment to talk to the normals. You can skip over the next bit and pick up reading after the sub-headline about sketchy details.

For the Uninitiated

If you don’t get the hype – BMW’s M division takes its luxury cars and turns them into track-worthy speed toys, in some cases literally adding parts developed for racing. M editions are more expensive than the cars they’re based on, but they are quicker and stealthier in that not everyone in traffic realizes the power your right foot commands. That’s fun for some people.

Americans have long been able to buy the M5 sedan – M’s version of BMW’s 5 Series luxury car. Overseas, the company has also built wagon versions since 1992. It’s never sold one in America.

A subset of car enthusiasts hates that fact because that same subset of car enthusiasts loves station wagons. Yes, that’s a little odd. But vinyl and big pants are back. We can think a Ford Country Squire is sexy, and you can’t stop us.

There’s a lot of practicality in a wagon – SUV-like hauling space without the off-road pretension, with better fuel economy, and with the planted poise of a sedan. A sleeper wagon that gets from 0 to 60 like a sports coupe but can hold a dorm room’s worth of stuff? That’s been a forbidden desire until now.

Details Sketchy for Now

BMW hasn’t even released details on the upcoming seventh-generation M5 sedan, never mind the wagon version.

What we have to go on is the vague statement that it uses an M Hybrid powertrain that “promises top-tier performance to go with the remarkable spaciousness.”

Our best guess says it will borrow parts from the BMW XM SUV, which has a plug-in hybrid system and gets up to 738 horsepower in its most fire-breathing edition, the XM Label, formally known as Label Red. It pairs a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 with an electric motor and comes standard with all-wheel drive (AWD).

There’s a reason we think that. BMW has sent along a video of the M5 and longroof M5 in testing. In the video, an unidentified test driver explains that its electric motor is built directly into the transmission — a technique BMW used with the XM.

The test mules (that’s what automakers call preproduction cars in testing) are wrapped in camouflage to hide visual details. But you only care about one visual detail: that long roofline — at last.

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