Why the 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo Matters:
Let’s say you want to buy a new luxury car for less than $50,000 that’s fun-to-drive and sporty in appearance, a vehicle offering a comfortable and roomy interior combined with tidy exterior dimensions, something that can carry lots of junk in its trunk and battle a snowstorm, but you don’t want an SUV, or a station wagon, or a multi-purpose vehicle, or a sedan. The segment-defying 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo is the only car that meets all of your criteria. And that’s why it matters.
What’s New for the 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo:
- 5-door hatchback design
- 328i and 335i model series
- Rear-wheel or all-wheel drive
- Standard, Luxury, Modern, Sport and M Sport trim lines
- Longer, taller, and roomier than any other 3 Series variant
New 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo: Styling and Design
The first time BMW attempted to execute the Gran Turismo packaging approach, with the current-generation 5 Series, the result proved unpopular with Americans who equate a hatchback with privation rather than practicality. Undaunted, BMW is taking a second stab at the Gran Turismo design philosophy, applying it to the 3 Series lineup, which skews to a younger, more open-minded buyer.
The result is the new 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo, and the latest 3 Series design cues help to make this GT rakishly handsome when lined up against its 5 Series counterpart. That should help broaden the car’s appeal.
Longer, taller, and roomier inside than the new 3 Series Sports Wagon, the new 2014 BMW 3 Series GT has more rear legroom than a 5 Series Sedan and its 18.4 cu.-ft. of trunk space bests that of a 7 Series Sedan. Folding 40/20/40-split rear seats expand cargo capacity, but to what extent BMW doesn’t say.
When the 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo goes on sale in the summer of 2013, it will be offered in Standard, Luxury, Modern, Sport, and M Sport trim lines, each with a unique appearance. Sport and M Sport versions will offer performance and handling upgrades compared to other models.
New 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo: What’s Under the Hood
The new 2014 BMW 328i Gran Turismo is equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine generating 240 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 255 lb.-ft. of torque between 1,250 rpm and 4,800 rpm. An 8-speed automatic transmission is standard, delivering power to the car’s rear wheels. As an option, xDrive all-wheel drive provides extra traction. Automatic stop/start technology shuts the engine off when idling in traffic or at an intersection to help conserve fuel.
A turbocharged 3.0-liter 6-cylinder engine is included in the 2014 BMW 335i Gran Turismo, making 300 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 300 lb.-ft. of torque between 1,200 rpm and 5,000 rpm. This model also has an 8-speed automatic and automatic stop/start technology, with rear-wheel drive standard and xDrive AWD optional.
Both versions of the new 3 Series GT are equipped with a Driving Experience Control system providing Eco Pro, Comfort, and Sport vehicle calibration settings. BMW also provides free scheduled service for the first 4 years or 50,000 miles of ownership.
New 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo: Features and Technology
Standard equipment highlights for the 3 Series Gran Turismo include automatic climate control, a panoramic sunroof, a power tailgate, and a 6.5-inch iDrive display with HD Radio, a USB port, and an iPod connection. Additionally, the 335i GT is equipped with adaptive Xenon headlights and BMW’s signature corona-ring driving lights.
Several option packages are offered for the new 3 Series GT. A Premium Package adds leather, power lumbar support for the front seats, satellite radio, and Comfort Access keyless entry with push-button starting. A Cold Weather Package includes heated front seats and a heated steering wheel, and a Dynamic Handling Package includes an adaptive M variable sports suspension.
To increase the car’s technology quotient, buyers can select the Technology Package (navigation system, head-up display, BMW Online services, BMW Apps); the Driver Assistance Package (reversing camera, parking assist sensors, Active Blind Spot Detection, Side and Top View Camera); and the Driver Assistance Plus Package (Lane Departure Warning system, Forward Collision Warning system). An optional BMW Parking Assist system can steer the 3 Series GT into a parallel parking space while the driver operates the pedal and transmission, an Active Cruise Control system includes Stop+Go capability, and BMW Assist telematics includes an Automatic Collision Notification service.
Additional extra-cost upgrades include a Sport automatic transmission with paddle shifters, rear side window shades, automatic high-beam headlights, a Harmon Kardon premium surround sound audio system, and metallic paint.
New 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo: What Autobytel Thinks
Getting back to why the 2014 BMW 3 Series GT matters, this car appears to be a perfect jack-of-all-trades, a vehicle that does almost everything all wrapped up into a single stylish and sensible package. Whether BMW customers will look at the Gran Turismo’s fastback profile, pinch their noses, and go “Ewww!” remains to be seen. Actually, that response would be OK. That reaction means big discounts for everyone else.
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