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      12-05-2017, 09:51 AM   #3

Drives: No BMW for now
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Canton, MI

iTrader: (1)

You are definitely not the only one who wishes this car were sold here. This discussion has come up more than once before.

As you point out, contrary to what some say or have said in the past, hatchbacks do have a dedicated, if relatively small (compared to sedans and SUVs), customer base in the US. However, there is currently not a strong enough market here for compact luxury hatchbacks in particular to support their sale. This is not specific to BMW - neither Audi nor Mercedes sell their compact hatchbacks here either. You mention the Lexus NX200 - that's an exception since its a hybrid only and fulfills the luxury green car niche. The Audi A3 hatchback is also sold here too, technically, but again, only as a hybrid.

The problem with bringing these vehicles to the US isn't customer interest, it is a matter of pricing. They would start at over $30k for a model with entry level options, engine, and interior specification. But small hatchback buyers tend to be looking for value. Since that is somewhat at odds with the selling proposition of a luxury automobile, manufacturers no doubt simply do not project enough demand to make a profitable case.

As for suggestions for alternatives to those you mention, have you seen the Mercedes-AMG GLA45? It is an SUV, but it is low slung and also very powerful. It does get some mixed reviews, due mainly to the somewhat unrefined DCT gearbox and high strung engine, but nevertheless it may be worth looking into. Also, the new X2 is launching very soon, and sometime next year they will add an M35i model with 300hp.