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Old 09-21-2009, 04:21 PM   #1
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First Drive: BMW 535i Gran Turismo evolves the wagon with clever packaging, solid dyn

Filed under: Wagon, Crossover, Hatchback, BMW, First Drive, Design/Style, Diesel, Luxury

BMW 535i Gran Turismo - Click above for high-res image gallery

Evolution is a tough thing to watch - and not merely because it takes millions of years. While the developmental pace of the automobile has proven to be rather quicker than the natural world surrounding it, the car industry's recent house-on-fire rush into new niches and sub-genres has often been similarly challenging to make sense of. Like those primordial fish that beach themselves, drag their bellies on the sand with their fins and eventually mutate into, say, Adriana Lima, you just have to know that the industry's recent diversification efforts will eventually yield a timeless beauty or two. But thus far, you could be forgiven for thinking that the process will take a few hundred millennia - especially where it concerns the industry's nascent call-me-anything-but-a-station-wagon movement.

While the burgeoning four-door coupe segment has already yielded some supermodels, the kinlugger set has yet to work out the same way. This, despite seemingly every automaker downing the midnight Red Bull in an effort to hit upon a package that bundles the functional attributes of a family hauler without their social stigma. Some companies are disguising their efforts as SUVs (traditional square-rigged crossovers); a few have waded in with quasi-minivans, while others are staking their claim to the muddy hatchback middle ground. Enter the latest automotive platypus, BMW's 5 Series Gran Turismo, a distinctive new five-door that aims to meld the practical utility of a CUV and a station wagon without the either genre's dynamic and civil penalties.


Gallery: First Drive: BMW 535i Gran Turismo



Continue reading First Drive: BMW 535i Gran Turismo evolves the wagon with clever packaging, solid dynamics and... a prehensile tail?

First Drive: BMW 535i Gran Turismo evolves the wagon with clever packaging, solid dynamics and... a prehensile tail? originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 21 Sep 2009 11:56:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.



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