Unless you own one, you probably forgot the BMW 3-series Gran Turismo existed. It does, after all, join a range already including 3-series saloon and Touring models, along with the 4-series coupe, convertible and the similar-looking 4-series Gran Coupe.
But if you’re in the market for a 3-series with a bit more practicality than the saloon, a bit less than the Touring and doesn’t look quite as sleek as the 4GC then you’re in luck, as BMW has updated it for 2016.
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Changes start with the styling, with subtle revisions to give the 3GT a more upmarket look. LED headlights and foglights are now standard-fit, as are LED tail lights. Adaptive LED headlights are an option.
Redesigned air intakes at the front and revisions to the front and rear bumpers, rear apron and larger exhaust tailpipes (up to 80mm on the range-topping 340i GT) complete the exterior revisions. There are changes inside too though, aimed at improving perceived quality.
That involves extra lashings of chrome trim and decorative wood elements (including ‘Fineline Light’ and ‘Ash Grain’), while new colour lines and leather trim options join a revised Centre Information Display. Interior and exterior embellishments (and colour choices) vary depending on whether you choose Sport Line, Luxury Line or M Sport trim.
New engines will be the main draw however, with fuel consumption reductions of up to 14 per cent thanks to technologies such as stop-start, brake energy regeneration and on-demand ancillary components. The entire engine range comes from BMW’s new all-aluminium modular engine family – with 500cc-per-cylinder displacements, balancer shafts in the four-pot units and turbocharging throughout.
New petrol units include a 181bhp 320i and 248bhp 330i, while the top petrol model – the six-cylinder 340i – makes 322bhp. Diesels have seen small revisions too – the four-cylinder, 2-litre 325d Gran Turismo uses twin turbochargers to develop 221bhp through a Steptronic automatic gearbox (a six-speed manual is standard on 320i, 318d and 320d models), and promises up to 60.1mpg.
All-wheel drive is available on every petrol-powered Gran Turismo, as well as the 335d xDrive, while it’s optional on the 320d and 330d GT. Suspension is unchanged.
The new models will be available from the summer. No pricing or full equipment line information has yet been confirmed.