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From Thu Mar 19 11:40:27 1998
Thu, 19 Mar 1998 11:40:22 -0800
From: Dale Beuning <>
Thu, 19 Mar 1998 11:40:17 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Re: <Touring> New E39 Touring
To: (Andres Jaime)
Date: Thu, 19 Mar 1998 11:40:15 -0800 (PST)
Cc: (BMW List),
Status: O

> A BMW touring would be an obvious possible choice. From the last Roundel I
> see that the E39 528i Touring currently sold in Europe will be coming to
> the USA (any idea if the E36 Touring may be crossing the Atlantic too?)

The E36 touring won't be coming, the E46 touring may be coming.

> We are interested in having the capacity to seat more than 5 passengers.

Get a Suburban.

> Does somebody know if the 5-series E39 touring has the option of a 3rd seat
> row (folding and rear-facing) ? Both the Mercedes E320 wagon and the
> Volvo V70 currently sold in the USA offer that option.
> I was told that the 5-series E34 touring did not have a 3rd seat option. Is
> that correct ?

The E34 did not have a 3rd seat, and I expect the E39 will not have a 3rd seat. The reason is simple, in all BMWs, and in all the manufacturers cars you mentioned, the area behind the rear axle is the crumple zone. If you get rear ended by a truck, that area is going to fold up like an accordian to absorb some of the energy of the crash. Do you really want passengers sitting there when this happens?

The two other car companies you mentioned know this, but choose to sell the 3rd seat anyway due to marketing pressure. Do you want to buy a car built to a marketer's spec? I don't. I want a car built to an engineer's spec.

> However, the E39 touring has a bigger cargo area than the E34 touring, and
> thus theoretically would be better suited to have such a seat. Do you have
> any information about this ?

Yes, buy the E39 because it's a better car. When you need to haul more then 5 people, take two cars, or buy a Suburban.

> Thanks,
> Andres Jaime
> 1993 325is (current)
> 1985 318i (gone but not forgotten)
> 199X 528i touring (possibly)

'95 M3
'88 325is
'80 528i
'01 M3
'02 540i touring


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