BMW is currently developing new models based on its 3- and 5-series platforms to fill the MPV/wagon segment, similar in style to the Mercedes R-Class. Unlike its car-based wagon models, these Sportvans will feature a taller ride-height as well as a higher roof, allowing for more interior space. According to MotorTrend, the new models are rumored to adopt F badges, F3 for the 3-series based version and F5 for the larger 5-series based wagon.

These latest renderings are a good indication of the final design of the two cars. Both will feature a conventional five-door wagon body-style with seating capacity for five occupants. Engine options will remain the same as their respective donor sedans, as well as rear-wheel drivetrains only.

The expected launch date for the F5 is in mid-2009, with the smaller F3 appearing one year later. BMW will also be launching a much larger X6 coupe-crossover vehicle based on the X5 SUV late next year, ahead of the launch of the new F-series of vehicles. Luxury car manufacturers are increasingly resorting to niche vehicles to spur growth, with similar models coming from the likes of Volkswagen and Mercedes Benz. It should be interesting to see which ones can break the mold and become mainstream.

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BMW_X_Sport_v.jpg