BMW pulls out stops for flag­ship Gran Turismo

Yorkshire Post - Motoring - - FRONT PAGE - Carmel Ste­wart

THE Gran Turismo – or GT as it is more pop­u­larly known – is not ex­pected to be a best seller when it ar­rives in BMW show­rooms in June.

Touted as an al­ter­na­tive to an SUV for car driv­ers who are put off by the bulk of 4x4 styling but are look­ing for lots of space, it is taller and longer than the saloon and tourer mod­els in the 3 Se­ries and de­liv­ers limou­sine style legroom in the rear. It has a range of both diesel and petrol en­gines and a start­ing price of £28,835. The BMW es­ti­mate of 23,000 UK sales over its life cy­cle seems a lit­tle con­ser­va­tive given that it is an ul­tra-smooth op­er­a­tor, es­pe­cially in Lux­ury trim.

The 3 Se­ries as a whole is a big seller for the com­pany: one in ev­ery three BMW own­ers drives one.

The GT comes straight in at the top and, as be­fits a new flag­ship model, BMW has pulled out all the stops and added a few eye-catch­ing fea­tures in­clud­ing new head­light clus­ters, wider air vents, and an ac­tive rear spoiler which pops up at 70mph. Chrome kicks in be­hind the front wheel but BMW says it is not merely a styling touch, as we are told it in­creases the air­flow.

At en­try level driv­ers still have to do that an­noy­ing lit­tle leap to raise or lower the seat – opt for the more lux­u­ri­ous spec and the won­der­ful elec­tronic sys­tem takes over.

COME AND GT IT: The BMW 3 Se­ries Gran Turismo will de­but in June.

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