Anger and frustration have come to many of our readers with the realization that BMWNA will not be offering us the new F11 5 Series Sports Wagon (even possibly the next 3er version F31). To enthusiasts and to those that like a car with substance, practicality and looks; BMW not offering this all wrapped in one package is tough to chew on.
Since our creation of this site some two years ago it has been quite apparent that we are enthusiast oriented (intentionally) and thatthe overwhelming majority of our readership is passionate and well educated when it comes to vehicles, their needs and how different the BMW experience is from everything else out there.
Once in a while we all need a reality check; for better or for worse. Today we are starting the day off with a little humility towards those at BMWNA who are responsible for making the hard decisions of what and what not to offer. Most of us do not see the reason for the wagons exiting the market to be all that transparent- there are thousands that would buy wagons, no?
The reality of the situation is that the vast majority of Americans are not enthusiasts, have little brand loyalty and purchase vehicles like they are appliances by mainly relying on the Consumer Reports bubble charts or solely on looks. The amazing thing is that many of these consumers do find our site and others like it to ask questions about future car purchases. All I know is that I name my cars (they are family) and never have or never will give my dishwasher a name so to me the concept of cars being appliances is quite foreign. I do not blindly stay within the brand but also know (from driving/researching competitors offerings) there are very few cars that exceed BMWs product line.
The following question (a similar one was also emailed to us) was asked of Jonathan Welsh at the Wall Street Journal–
Q: I am currently driving a BMW 535. This is my third BMW and I am ready for a change. One of the problems with the BMW is the lack of leg room in the back seat. I am 6 ‘2 ” so I also need room up front. Can you suggest a sedan that offers more legroom? I am looking at the Hyundai Genesis.
Reading this question helped me realize that BMWNA is not so far off in some of their product decisions (and the reason I offer it up today). I question the logic one must use to even consider going from a BMW to a Hyundai based solely on leg room. This question drives home the point that people seem to care more about the number of cup holders and leg room than how the car holds the road or the engineering prowess of the brand.
What we also know is that the F10 5 Series has grown a bit to offer more rear leg room so to the person that posed this question should be able to stay in a BMW 5 Series, and it is completely a new design (if they so choose). Thanks to BMW meeting the needs of the main consumer base our cars have grown to the dismay of us enthusiasts. Is the growth and softening of the brand really BMW ‘s fault or is it the clueless American consumer ‘s? I for one over the last year have gained a better understanding of the market and see what BMW(NA) must compete with from both buyers and the competition- I do not envy their situation and they are doing an admirable job in my humble opinion by offering the majority products they (the “masses “) desire and giving us versions that are more in-tune to our enthusiast wants and needs.