BMW Station Wagon: a case for the unpopular

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Station wagons as a whole do not have such a great reputation. For most people they are ugly and without much use to them. But then why are they so popular in Europe, where every second car seems to be a station wagon?


The new BMW sports wagon makes me think that maybe people overseas do not have such a bad taste after all. Something peculiar is going on and we are about to find that out. So, read on!

The history of the BMW Station Wagon

Before we take a better look at the BMW mentioned above, it will do us well if we review the history of that vehicle. It all started with the development of the famous BMW Series 3. They are an entry level luxury series of vehicles hailing from the land of Germany. And although the station wagon variant of the series was introduced at a later point, it had soon become a staple.

If you have ever been to Europe, you have definitely noticed that even in richer countries these wagons are not a rare sight. Another interesting note is that while you can definitely see some other car makes out there, most station wagons seem to be BMWs. At least for the luxury vehicles anyway.

It all began in 1987 with the second generation of Series 3. Since then every generation has had a wagon option, although it was marketed as “Touring” back in the day. If you are wondering which generation the current model is in, that would be the sixth, developed in 2011. But that is not the end of it. Because BMW is also selling a wagon in their Series 5 – the luxury step-up in their lineup.

So obviously, there is an appeal not only to BMW vehicles as a whole but to the station wagon in particular. And if you have been paying any attention, you may have noticed that car enthusiasts in the US are crying out loud for the BMW wagon to hit our market as well.  On that note, if you are interested in purchasing a vehicle of that make, be sure to check out our article on why you should ship your BMW. But let us dive deeper into the whole station wagon craze.

What are the merits of the BMW Sports Wagon?

Depending on which series we go with (3 or 5) there are a lot of things to consider. For the purposes of this post, we will focus on the more affordable Series 3, as the latter is unlikely to hit car dealerships here in the States anyway.

Firsts things first, we need to burst the notion of most Americans that station wagons are somewhat inferior. They are not. Aside from their looks, there is nothing to them that makes them particularly worse. Whatever else you can expect in a regular car (depending on the make, of course), you can also find here. So let us see what that would be.

A beast under the hood

Here in the States most of the enthusiasts (and even some regular folks) are drooling over the sound of a revving engine. Power is all that matters and that seems to be reflected in most of our American vehicles. Which is why people seem to feel some sort of a duty to say that American-made is always better than foreign vehicles, especially in terms of muscle.

Whether your car is truly American is a discussion we have already had, so we will not deliberate on it now. But suffice to say – the BMW Series 3 Sports Wagon is here to stake its claim when it comes to raw power. Because for a vehicle that should supposedly appeal to a wider market, it has the whopping 248 horsepower for the top model. That is absolutely nothing to scoff at!

The truth is that more and more people are now looking at vehicles with better MPG ratio not only for economy’s sake but also for the environment. So an excessive amount of torque and power is not welcome if it comes at the price of paying for double the fuel and emissions. That being said, the BMW 3 Sports Wagon strikes a nice balance and is definitely going to satisfy the majority of consumers.

It does not look half bad either!

Okay, we should agree that looks are the most subjective thing when it comes to cars (and a lot of other things as well). So it is not right to say that this current vehicle is somehow a visual masterpiece. But the opposite is true too – say what you will, this is not an ugly car. Actually, if you put in the effort to research station wagons, you will see that most of the newer ones are one heck of a ride. (Hint: Try Audi RS6 for starters).

I know that a lot of wagons look extremely unappealing, especially if you look at older (ahem, also American-made) models – they look a bit too much like metal boxes. But this BMW here has thoughtful design, and although it may strike you as way too long at first, that is something you can get used to pretty quickly. Especially when you jump in it!

There is something to say about German manufacturers – they know how to make a vehicle feel luxurious, even if it is their entry model. Wagon or not, you will not be able to resist the amazing salon.


Why do Americans dislike station wagons?

When I think about it, the only reason that comes to mind is that we are no longer used to these kinds of vehicles. Of course, you can go online and search for all kinds of reasons. Some are more pragmatic, others – less so. You can make the case that a wagon just does not offer anything more per se (although it does). Or that it has been marketed towards families, where the competition is fairly tough anyway.

In psychology, there is a concept of the mere exposure effect. The more you notice something, the more you accept it as normal. And Europeans, being practical and all, adopted the concept of the station wagon, after which it just became… well, normal. Here that is not the case.

I do not like to make general statements, such as the fact that Americans are less practical or something like that. That is likely not true. But what is true is that we are just not used to seeing these cars around, so whenever we do, we tend to judge their looks pretty harshly. Well, I think we are ready for a change in perspective.

Are you ready to go for a sports wagon?

Tell me, are you now convinced that station and sports wagons are worth it? Go beyond the looks and think in terms of usability, practicality, and sheer awesomeness – after all, you will be driving a pretty unique vehicle.

If you are not sure about buying one new, you can try out a used one. For the best deals, you can go online and look for the best deals there. When you find one, you can ship your vehicle to you without a problem. Just get a free car shipping quote from us and you will be ready to go!

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About the Author:

Atanas Nikolov is a creative with an affinity for psychology and science. He believes the universe is a wonderful place to explore, and no universe is greater than the one inside ourselves. He enjoys a good debate, and can always bring an alternative viewpoint to the table. He also loves reading fiction and poetry. It is highly likely that he writes some as well, but these rumors have not been proven yet.
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