Britain's Stephen Rowbotham, Tom Solesbury, Charles Cousins and Matt Wells finished fifth in the quadruple sculls final as Germany took gold.
The British quartet clocked a time of five minutes 49.19 seconds with Croatia taking the silver and Australia bronze.
"GB laid it on the line and they can't complain with that. Fifth is an excellent result."
won their semi-final
with the third fastest qualifying time, but made a slow start to lie fourth at halfway.
A roaring capacity crowd inspired a push in the final 500m, but it was not enough to challenge for a medal.
Croatia installed themselves as favourites after winning gold in all three World Cups, but it was world silver medallists Germany who took the race out hard at the start of the 2,000m event.
Britain, with Beijing silver medallists Wells and Rowbotham on board, were in contention for a medal at the 500m mark, but faded over the next 1,000m and could not recover.