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BMW’s new brute ute is no X-Class killer

By Alex Rae, 08 Jul 2019 News

BMW’s new brute ute is no X-Class killer

German maker builds its third load lugger, but this one is more luxurious than ever before

Despite BMW vowing it has no interest to build a ute to take on the Mercedes X-Class, young boffins in the tech department clearly think otherwise.

Utilising an old test mule X7 SUV, 12 trainees from the mechatronics, body modeling, and engineering departments in Munich have built a hulking bespoke ute for BMW Motorrad events.

Unlike the Nissan Navara-based X-Class, the one-off Beemer utility rides on BMW’s latest CLAR platform, motivated by the X7’s all-wheel drive xDrive40i straight-six petrol drivetrain producing 250kW and 450Nm through an eight-speed automatic. It also gains specially-tuned two-stage air suspension tailored for both comfort and hauling a load.

Cutting the wagon off the back, the third-row seats were removed and the new rear tray extends 100mm longer than where the hatch previously sat. Adding a touch of class in the tub is teak slat lining and puddle lamps to illuminate the precious cargo - a BMW F 850 GS Touring bike.

Using 3D SLS printing and CFRP parts, the ute weighs a huge 200kg less than the X7, though it still carries that huge set of teeth upfront.

It’s not the first parts hauler to come out of BMW, with the M division creating an E30 ute in 1986, and an E92 M3 ute in 2011. Is this new luxo ute a case of third-time lucky for us to see a production BMW pick-up? Not a chance, according to BMW, which says it has no interest in the dual-cab market.