BMW Rules Out Pickup Truck Saying There’s No Business Case For It

BMW’s development chief and board member Klaus Frohlich has ruled out any chances of the German car manufacturer building a pickup to rival the Mercedes-Benz X-Class.

Ever since the X-Class premiered, BMW has been flooded with questions about producing a rival. Many of the calls for this model have come from Australia, where the company’s local arm has been pushing for a pickup for a number of years.

However, talking to Motoring at the Paris Auto Show, Frohlich said there’s no viable business case for a luxurious pickup truck.

“I’m the bad guy. I see no evidence that we can ever do a good proposition. Every business case we did so far… it was by far not relevant. For us, the market segment is too small, because we are at the higher price level for pick-ups,” Frohlich said.

“The premium side of that market is extremely small … there’s only a few regions of the world – Australia is one of them. If you look at the pickup market… if you look at the segment of the pick-up trucks, it’s very much utilities, so median price points are very, very low,” he said.

There had been talk of BMW potentially partnering with Toyota to create an upscale pickup using the underpinnings of the Hilux. Such a partnership would have followed on from the two automakers’ co-development of the new Supra and Z4 and be similar to the relationship between Mercedes-Benz and Nissan that spawned the X-Class.

Frohlich denied such a tie-up was ever considered by BMW, bluntly stating that “We will never do badge engineering.”

Rendering via Rain Prisk

  • Christian
  • Adilos Nave

    But yet there was a business case for the 3-series and 5-series GT? BMW has a model with a bazillion different configurations for each sub-segment imaginable so it’s surprising they would pass on yet another one. I mean, what about a convertible, M-sport 6 series grand-coupe SUV? They haven’t done that yet.

    • Mr. EP9

      Well, they did announce they are killing the 3 series GT. Perhaps they are changing things up but I’m still convinced they are just talking out of their exhaust pipe.

  • pcurve

    no business case for manual tranny in new 3 series either i suppose. Yet you see one being offered in genesis g70.

  • iea96

    Why do they keep turning M3’s into pickups then?

    • Mr. EP9

      There was only two of those I think and they were used in house by BMW themselves. No idea why.

      • Bob

        They were used to carry stuff around. The M3 pickup thing was them just being facetious.

  • Mr_Fanta_Pants

    With the X-Class apparently selling less than 4,000 vehicles per month world wide, this is a good decision.

    • Major Lee Gassole

      Thank you for writing that. I threw up a bit just trying to write about that model. 😉

  • Paul

    It may look cool but there’s probably little to no market for it.

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