There's no need to wait for next month's AMI motor show in Leipzig, Germany, to get a look at the new 2011 BMW 5-Series Touring as the first official photos and details of the premium station-wagon were leaked online ahead of its intended debut.
Based on the latest generation 5-series sedan which itself was only just revealed a few months ago, the new Touring model continues to be more about style and handling and less about outright functionality and boot capacity.
That's even more evident when you compare the 5-Series Touring's to the also new, 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate.
Despite a 60-liter increase in load space with the rear seats up (from 500 to 560lt) and 20-liters with the same seats down (from 1,650 to 1,670lt), the Bimmer still lacks in comparison to Merc's E-Class Estate that boasts a cavernous load space ranging from 695-liters (seats up) to 1950-litres (seats down).
The improve practicality, the 5-Series Touring is equipped with 40/20/40 flat-folding rear seats and an independently opening window on the rear hatch.
When the Bavarian automaker's largest station wagon model hits European showrooms in September, it will be offered at launch with two petrol engines, a 204HP naturally aspirated straight-six in the 523i and a 306HP single-turbocharged six in the 535i, as well as two turbo diesels, a 184HP four-pot in the 520d and a 245HP six-cylinder unit in the 525d.
No word yet if BMW will offer the Touring version of the new 5er in the U.S. market.